Welland Mayor will not seek spot on NPCA board if re-elected

It's been nearly a week since the Auditor General released her report on the operations at the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority. 

Bonnie Lysyk's report found weak governance and operational practices at the NPCA and included 24 recommendations to help the organization restore public trust. 

The NPCA Board, which includes 11 politicians from Regional Council, will not receive and consider the AG's report until November, having cancelled their October meeting.

CKTB news has reached out to all the local mayors and regional councillors seeking re-election for their personal opinions on the report.

Our email was referred to the NPCA Communications Specialist, who indicated that neither the chair, nor any NPCA Board Member will be making any comments beyond what has been issued in previous media releases. 

Welland Mayor, and NPCA Board Member, Frank Campion, however, agreed to speak to CKTB. 

Campion says he supports all of the recommendations proposed and that the report provided a lot of insight.   

"The report confirms the difficulty, and conflicting points of view, that having a Regional rep on the board creates. Who you are representing at both the Regional Council table and the NPCA table? I do not describe my situation in the context of a "conflict of interest" but an internal conflict of decision."

Campion says he will not be seeking a seat on the NPCA Board if he is re-elected on October 22nd.

 He will also be supporting a motion set for Regional Council tomorrow that would see appointment process given to local municipalities to appoint "qualified and independent citizens" to the NPCA Board, as opposed to political representatives. His Council passed a similar motion earlier this year.

Campion was quick to point out that he was speaking on his own, the opinions were his and are not representative of the NPC Board, as a whole. 

Below is the email reply received from NPCA Communications Staff who were not emailed by CKTB.  CKTB reached out to only Niagara councillors and mayors on the board seeking re-election on October 22nd.  They included Niagara Falls Mayor Jim Diodati, Welland Mayor Frak Campion, Lincoln Mayor Doug Joyner, Wainfleet Mayor April Jeffs, NOTL Mayor Patrick Darte, Regional Councillors Bruce Timms, Tony Quirk, Brian Baty and Sandy Annunziata 

Thank you for your message Noelle,

Neither the NPCA Chair, nor any NPCA Board Member will be making any comments beyond what has been issued in the statements below. NPCA's responses are captured in Ms. Lysyk’s report. Only the Auditor General may speak to her report. 

NPCA Board Chair Annunziata’s Official Statement: https://npca.ca/news/official-statement-auditor-general-report-issued-sandy-annunziata-niagara-peninsula

NPCA CAO Brickell’s Official Statement: https://npca.ca/news/official-statement-auditor-general-report-issued-mark-brickell-niagara-peninsula-conservation
NPCA Media Release: https://npca.ca/news/npca-welcomes-release-auditor-general%E2%80%99s-special-audit-report
Auditor General’s Report: http://www.auditor.on.ca/en/content/specialreports/specialreports/NPCA_en.pdf

Thank you,