Acting mayor appointment in Langley City delayed due to missed ad

Booking of an ad in The Times was mishandled by newspaper, leads to special meeting next week.

  • Jul. 23, 2013 2:00 p.m.

Plans to select an acting mayor for the City of Langley had to be tabled on Monday night after a legal requirement to advertise the meeting for two consecutive weeks in a local newspaper was not met.

The advertisement ran in the Thursday, July 11 issue of the Langley Times but, due to a booking error at the newspaper, did not run again on Thursday, July 18, as is required under the Community Charter.

A special council meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 31 in council chambers to elect an acting mayor.

It will begin at 7 p.m. and is open to the public.

In total, six items were struck from Monday’s agenda as a result of the error, including the vote to elect an acting mayor.

A motion by Councillor Dave Hall to determine remuneration for the acting mayor was also tabled, as was his motion to introduce a question period at public council meetings.

During Monday’s discussion, Councillor Jack Arnold moved that the City place advertisements in both of Langley’s  community newspapers on Thursday, July 25 and Tuesday, July 30, to ensure that it runs twice before Wednesday’s special meeting.

Hall responded that it would be a waste of money, given the profile of the error.

“It would be incredible to me that they screw up twice,” he said.

The motion was defeated.

On May 18, Peter Fassbender was elected MLA for Surrey-Fleetwood. At that time, he indicated he would resign as mayor of the City of Langley in early July.

However, he later agreed to a formal request from the remaining six members of council that he instead take a leave of absence, thus allowing council to elect an acting mayor from among its ranks.

Once elected on Wednesday, that councillor will perform the duties of mayor until the next municipal election is held in November, 2014.

Fassbender will officially resign the position of mayor on Jan. 2, 2014, at which point a byelection will not be required under the Community Charter.

The Times has issued an apology to the City of Langley, its council and staff members for the error. The ad will appear in the Thursday and Tuesday editions of the newspaper.

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