Support our officials

Dear Mr. Behan:
We are fortunate in the Town of Fort Frances to have dedicated citizens who are willing to give their time to our community through service on both our Town Council and as our Mayor. In last weeks editorial it was suggested that our Mayor personally make the $5,000.00 payment of the deductible for the settlement costs in the Mihichuk lawsuit. I am confident that after consideration of the circumstances and facts involved that you would agree that this request is inappropriate.
The Mayor has acknowledged that it was an error in judgement on his part that caused the litigious situation. As a taxpayer in Fort Frances I have every confidence that Mayor Witherspoon’s error was made in his attempts to benefit the community and not in any way to provide personal gain.
It is standard practice that organizations acquire errors and omissions insurance for their directors or representatives. This common practice is required because people often, with the very best of intentions, make mistakes. To request personal payment of the $5,000.00 deductible is not only a mistaken sentiment, the precedent set would likely deter good people from running for public office or from taking positions on the many volunteer boards and committees in our community, as any of us could make an error.
Through his many efforts working with local and regional groups and travelling to countless meetings throughout Ontario our Mayor has been instrumental in having the needs of our very small community understood and addressed at both the Provincial and Federal government levels. I recognize that the position of Mayor of Fort Frances has a small salary attached, but given the amount of time that our current Mayor commits to the interests of this community I would hesitate to see what our bill would be if he charged hourly for his services.
As citizens of this great community, I would submit that we should attempt to support the efforts of those that we elect to represent our interests. In that spirit we will hopefully continue to attract capable and committed individuals like Glen Witherspoon to work on our behalf in future years.
Tannis Drysdale