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walkerford

Dear Editor

I took the time to send a note via his web site to MPP Bill Walker. In it I outlined my reasons for not supporting Mr. Ford in his vendetta against the Toronto City Council. Particularly I stated my disappointment with the use of the notwithstanding clause. I received the following in response:

 

September 24th, 2018

Thank you for your email about the use of Section 33 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. I am pleased to respond, albeit a bit late, but trust you will forgive given the volume and interest from both sides on this issue.

I appreciate your feedback, and I want to assure you that I did spend a great deal of time considering the concerns raised, as well as speaking to experts in the legal community to get their thoughts on it as well. In all of these considerations, there was always one constant – I have a great deal of respect for our judicial system, but law making power is given, by the people, to Ontario's elected representatives.

Furthermore, Section 33 is a part of our constitution, so it doesn't overrule the constitution. We're using a tool found within our constitution for the very reason it was put there.

Finally, our constitution clearly lays out the fact that the provinces have the exclusive right to pass legislation about cities. We believe we were well within that right when we passed the Better Local Government Act.

Since I received your email, a panel of three Ontario Court of Appeal judges unanimously agreed that Justice Belobaba made an error in his judgement and as a result have stayed his decision until the appeal is heard. In their decision the three judges said, "We have concluded that there is a strong likelihood that application judge erred in law and that the Attorney General's appeal to this court would succeed." As a result, the Better Local Government Act stands and does so without Section 33.

Thank you again for sharing your concerns on this issue.

Sincerely,

Bill Walker, MPP
Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound

 

 

 

I am sure that my displeasure with these results is apparent, however, I am offering Mr. Walker's response for publication simply as an informative measure.

 

Sincerely,

Kelly Babcock

Owen Sound

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