Alberton Mayor Michael Murphy
ALBERTON - An Alberton town councillor responsible for looking at ways to extend the town's boundaries expressed disappointment recently after Mayor Michael Murphy broke a tie vote that defeated her motion to have the town's human resources policy publicly reviewed.
"We don't have a human resources policy on staff evaluation, performance management, that type of thing," Natasha Dunn said in support of her motion for a policy review.
"I'm a little bit off here; I thought you were working on extending town boundaries?" Murphy enquired before casting his dissenting vote at the recent town council meeting.
When Dunn explained that Municipal Affairs officials suggested the town get its own house in order before looking at extending boundaries, the mayor acknowledged the town still hasn't looked at all of its policies but suggested, "that should not stop you from moving ahead with looking at ways to acquire some of this for Alberton to grow."
Three councillors voted with the motion and three opposed. Councillor Claudia Gallant led the charge against it.
"What are we going over our human resources policies for?" she asked.
"We will look at the policies when we have time. Right now I'm voting against it," the mayor said in defeating the motion.
The meeting carried on without any further discussion on the motion or the outcome of the vote, but Dunn, who has butted heads with the mayor on several issues since her election 18 months ago, subsequently penned her reaction.
"Municipal Affairs under the effective leadership of director Albert MacDonald, strongly recommended that we as a council, need to get our house in order. Alberton Town Council has since reviewed and effectively revised two fire policies, but this is only the tip of the iceberg, we have many more policies to work on," Dunn said in issuing a news release critical of the mayor's stance.
"As councillors, we need to draw from the wealth of knowledge and insight from the people of Alberton. By having the meeting open to the public, there could be suggestions coming from the floor that we had never entertained or didn't think of," Dunn argued.