VIDEO: Council Approves BIA Budgets Including CAMPP Support

The Citizens for an Accountable Mega-hospital Planning Process will be getting financial support from several Windsor Business Improvement Associations after all.

After deferring a debate over BIA budgets a week ago, council unanimously passed the documents Monday night which include donations and pledges to CAMPP's appeal against putting the new mega hospital in County Rd. 42 and the 9th Concession — the difference being the funds will now come from previous BIA reserves.

Richard Pollock is the lawyer representing the Downtown Windsor, Wyandotte Town Centre and Erie St. BIAs.

He says city administration met with the BIAs last week and came to a solution.

"The meeting was very productive. We're very pleased with administration. In good faith, they sat down and talked about their concerns. We talked about our concerns. The Municipal Act says, quite clearly, that BIAs are there to promote the interest of their membership and that's what they have done."

Pollock says it's time to move past the issue.

"The budget, as presented, was approved and there's been no issue with respect to whether or not those monies were improperly expended. The monies have been dedicated to that appeal to promote the interest of the BIAs. So we're happy with the result and we're looking forward to moving forward."

AM800-NEWS-Richard-Pollock-May-27-2019

Local lawyer Richard Pollock speaks with reporters at a Windsor City Council meeting on May 27, 2019 (Photo by AM800's Zander Broeckel)

He says the BIAs still hold the position they did nothing wrong.

"The statute says that the BIAs can promote their areas through their budgets or through their reserves. So the monies that were dedicated and donated to the CAMPP appeal were taken from the reserves and dedicated to the appeal."

The BIAs will be donating a total of $8,750 to CAMPP's appeal bringing its Go Fund Me page to over $60,000.

In addition to the budget approval, councillor Joanne Gignac asked for better guidelines for BIAs to improve spending accountability.

City administration will prepare a draft policy mirroring what's used in Toronto — the birthplace of BIAs.