District of North Vancouver Mayor Mike Little will get his top official to commission an independent review of the actions of the council members in regard to passing of a bylaw that banned pigeons in the district.
David Stuart, the CAO of the district, would commission the review, the Mayor told CBC.
Mayor Little’s announcement follows weeks of discussion in the community about Councillor Betty Forbes’s actions in this matter.
Forbes had complained about the pigeons owned by her next-door neighbour before she was elected a councillor and later wanted a ban on them.
According to emails obtained by CBC, Forbes pressed on her fellow councillors, Lisa Muri and Megan Curren, to pass a bylaw that would ban the keeping of pigeons in the district. The emails were sent two days before the issue was first discussed in the council this summer.
At a council meeting this week, Coun. Forbes called for better training on conflict of interest and freedom of information as she broke her silence on the controversy.
Forbes said she had followed the advice of staff and also took independent legal advice on her conduct.
“Out of an abundance of caution, I recused myself from the council discussion on the bylaw. It has always been my intention to act with integrity and in the best interest of the district, both as a private citizen and more recently as a councillor,” Forbes said.
“If I have erred in any way, I assure council and the community that it was done inadvertently and in good faith and in my understanding as a new councillor,” she said.
The council was also addressed by those who support the ban on pigeons and by those who felt Forbes had abused her position as a councillor.