Town council forced to cancel meetings due to lack of clerk

By Merna Emara
Staff Writer

All council and committee meetings have been cancelled for the remainder of the month because there is no clerk.

Fort Frances Mayor June Caul said they cannot hold council meetings unless they have a clerk present. Caul said Lisa Slomke stayed for a few weeks following her resignation to get them through the last council meeting.

Caul said she is aware that Faisal Anwar, town CAO, has done interviews and given out offers to a prospective clerk and HR manager.

“I have not been part of the hiring process at all, but I know they have approached people for these two positions,” Caul said. “There has not been any word on whether they have accepted the offers or not. I’m sure Faisal Anwar will let us know as soon as somebody does accept and signs a contract and we can move forward.”

Caul added that the future clerk will need some time to get into the position and get their bearings before council starts inundating them with meetings.

It has been a difficult year, Caul said, especially for Anwar, the new CAO, as he tries to get adjusted to the new position, the town, and hiring for two very important vacant positions.

Caul said there are no urgent matters that require immediate council attention, adding that if they had to they could always get together somehow and see how they could work it out.

Usually there isn’t something that is of such urgency that it cannot wait for a short while, Caul added. She said a lot of stuff can be handled by administration unless there are some policy issues or procedure issues that they deal with.

“It’s been pretty quiet as well, there really hasn’t been a lot going on this last little while,” Caul said. “This will be the only time that they are not being held. We’ll have our regular executive committee meetings the first week of October.”

Caul said she hopes constituents understand that it takes time to get out of a transition period because it takes time to advertise, interview and hire individuals for these jobs. Caul added that she is sure that administration will work with the CAO to overcome difficult times.

“I’m really pleased with the decision we made to hire Mr. Anwar, as our CEO. He is very dedicated and knowledgeable,” Caul said. “I think he’s a real team player. And I think the administration is happy to have him as their head. I’m hoping that people understand that we are in a period of transition, but if anybody has any concerns about anything, my door is always open. You can always give me a call.”