Kamloops mayor's actions prompt council to consider ban on recorded phone conversations
Kamloops city council might soon be banned from recording their conversations with staff. The proposed policy comes weeks after the Reid Hamer-Jackson revealed he recorded a conversation with the city's top employee CAO David Trawin and then he tried to have a member of the public...
Kamloops city council might soon be banned from recording their conversations with staff.
The proposed policy comes weeks after the Reid Hamer-Jackson revealed he recorded a conversation with the city's top employee CAO David Trawin and then he tried to have a member of the public read the transcript aloud at a council meeting.
Trawin wasn't aware Hamer-Jackson's wife recorded the phone call, which was first revealed at a council meeting, Sept. 6. About two weeks later, council asked staff to write up a new policy that would stop it from happening again.
"The City of Kamloops has a legal duty to provide a safe workplace for its employees, free of bullying and harassment," the staff report detailing the new policy read.
City council will vote on the recording ban next week, which would not only prohibit anyone on council from secretly recording conversations but also having any other person discreetly listening in on conversations with staff.
It will also prohibit the mayor and councillors from secretly recording any conversation about city business, staff or otherwise.
The recorded conversation between Trawin and the mayor was this past spring when the pair discussed details of the Noble Creek irrigation system and whether the city would have to declare a state of emergency.
Hamer-Jackson wanted to have a resident read the transcript of the conversation aloud at a council meeting, but he was quickly blocked by councillors, concerned about what sounded like a conversation that was secretly recorded.
Council resolved to investigate the mayor's behaviour and ordered him to turn the recording over, which he did in October.
Hamer-Jackson told iNFOnews.ca the March phone call was the only one he had a recorded copy of. He wrote a letter to city staff and council, Oct. 6, in which he said he's not aware of any other recorded conversations.
He went on to say he takes "very serious issue" with what he calls "factually inaccurate assumptions and statements" in the council closed meeting notes released to the public. Specifically, council suggested Hamer-Jackson had a "practice" of secretly recording phone calls, but he denied doing so.
Whether he's been found to have violated an existing code of conduct policy isn't clear as there've been no publicly released updates on the investigation.
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