Mayor sends Christmas gifts from developers along to community organizations.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

December 23rd, 2019

BURLINGTON, ON

 

It is a common business practice to send a gift to the people one does business with at Christmas. In my errant youth while working in the financial sector the practice was to send along a case of Single Malt. Those days are long gone.

The development community maintains the practice but uses gift Baskets to convey their season’s wishes.

MMW baasket 1

A social media moment indeed.

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward’s office received a number and posted her policy about gifts on her Facebook page and in a Tweet she sent out.

Mayor’s Office got several holiday gift baskets from developers.

“My personal policy is not to accept gifts from this with current/pending before city council.

“Baskets found a good home Halton women’s Place and Welling Square Friday Community Dinner.

“In future a Christmas card suffices to spread holiday and Christmas cheer.

She suggested that in future gifts be directed to people in need.

One Gazette reader commented:  Pretty empty gesture, however, when you’re giving the downtown away. Nice photos though – and another social media moment.

Yet another pointed out that Provincially, you aren’t permitted to accept any gift.  Keeps things very simple and very clean.

Another asked if the other members of council were favoured – and if they were what did they do with anything they might have received.

Good question. Let’s ask them

Provincially, you aren’t permitted to accept any gift.  Keeps things very simple and very clean.

 

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6 comments to Mayor sends Christmas gifts from developers along to community organizations.

  • Roland Tanner

    The mayor’s “personal policy” is not actually relevant. The City’s Code of Good Governance prevents councillors accepting gifts over $25 unless they are “an integral part of our duties as a councillor” – in which case they must be reported for the City Clerk.

    Quote from https://www.burlington.ca/en/your-city/resources/How_We_Operate/Integrity-Commissioner/COB-Code-of-Good-Governance.pdf:
    “We will avoid any actual or perceived conflict of interests. We, and our family members, will avoid accepting gifts, and where accepting a gift is an integral part of our duties as a member of council, we will report those valued at more than $25 accepted, to the City Clerk who will annually report them to the public. We will adhere to the Corporate Policy on Gifts and Hospitality.”

    The gifts shown in photographs are clearly in excess of the $25 limit, unless my understanding of the costs of gift baskets is way off, and therefore have to be returned/refused. Technically I’m not sure that passing them onto other groups is allowed – it could still be viewed as a ‘benefit’ to the council member. However, if local groups get some benefit out of it, great.

  • A.M. Tywonek

    Here’s a gift developers can deliver; affordable housing for those ‘in need’ of a decent roof over their heads. Just a thought.

  • steven craig Gardner

    I assume similar happens to any gifts given the mayor by any of the many so called citizen groups in the city as it has the same message as a developer basket carries.

  • david barker

    OMG !

    ‘One Gazette reader commented: Pretty empty gesture, however, when you’re giving the downtown away. Nice photos though – and another social media moment.”

    OK, “One Gazette reader” what would you have had her do with them. “One Gazette reader” you are too cynical and too critical!

    “Another asked”, if we asked the other councillors are we not providing the same “media moment” criticised by “One Gazette reader”.

    Another non-story !

    Perhaps question the gift givers as to their thoughts on the appropriateness of making such gifts. Also maybe suggests that in recognition of the now generally accepted practice in the FI and other industries, developers send a greetings card noting a donation has been made to a local not-for-profit organization; such as ECOB or Burlington Green or DGL.

    DGL = Developers Get Lost

    • Mike Ettlewood

      And you, apart from being virtually omnipresent, are tedious beyond measure and annoying as hell. But I mean this in the most constructive of ways.

      • david barker

        You are entitled to your opinion. Though I am surprised it was published! It’s hard to see the “constructive” aspect. When I have made similar remarks, I was blocked. I have no problem with you stating your opinion, no matter how lacking begin value (kidding, maybe). Enjoy the holidays.

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