Renfrew Councillor John McDonald, pictured in a file photo, is facing a motion removing him from all council appointments.

Renfrew – Reeve Peter Emon, who was removed from all committee, group and board assignments after Renfrew council sanctioned him in March, tabled his own Notice of Motion calling for the removal of Councillor John McDonald from all committees, groups and board appointments.

It was a bit of a turning of the tables against the councillor, who made the motion in March calling for the removal of the reeve from committee, group or board appointments.

Reeve Emon’s Notice of Motion was placed near the end of Tuesday night’s council  agenda and read:

That Renfrew Town Council remove Councillor John McDonald from all committees, groups and boards in which he has been tasked to be a representative of the Town and furthermore this remain in effect from 11:59pm April 23rd, 2024 until 11:59 October 26, 2026.

Reeve Emon, who was acclaimed Reeve in the 2022 Municipal Elections, is serving his third consecutive term of council and informed council at the end of the April 9 council meeting he would be bringing forward a Notice of Motion. At the time, it appeared his motion was directed towards Councilor Andrew Dick.

At that earlier meeting, the councillor spoke in frustration about the sole-sourced contract to a business owned by a former member of council for office furniture for the town hall renovation. He made reference to the previous term of council when he said, “If we weren’t here to question this and if this were four or eight years ago, I am sure this would just slide under the table.”

Reeve Emon, a member of the previous council, appeared to take offence to the statement and when recognized by Mayor Sidney to speak to the matter, he said, “I would encourage my friend to remove his comment about sliding under the table.”

The councilor did not retract his statements at that point or during the meeting. At the end of the meeting, Reeve Emon informed council he intended to bring a Notice of Motion to the April 23 meeting. His motion read:

“That council considers and approves sanctions for a current member of council whose actions have or will impact negatively the image of the town of Renfrew.”

Renfrew Reeve Peter Emon, who was removed from all council appointments, is tabling a motion calling on the removal of Coun. McDonald from all appointments.

Reeve Emon’s Notice of Motion last night requesting that sanctions be levelled against a fellow councilor is another in a growing list of similar motions.

Coun. McDonald himself has introduced three motions in total. He introduced a motion of non-confidence against Mayor Sidney demanding his resignation at the January 30 meeting and introduced two separate motions at the March 26 meeting requesting council remove both Mayor Sidney and Reeve Emon from all committee, groups or board appointments.

Councilor Kyle Cybulski also introduced a Notice of Motion at the March 26 meeting requesting Mayor Sidney resign his position after the final draft report investigating the Ma-te-Way Expansion reported the project ran $17 million over budget and remains unfinished close to 20 months after construction began.

Mayor Sidney refused to step down on both occasions.

When the floor was opened for debate during the January 30 meeting, Reeve Emon, who was one of three councilors who voted against the motion of non-confidence against Mayor Sidney, cautioned his fellow councilors to consider the long-term consequences of individual members demanding sanctions against a fellow member.

“I can’t support this motion this evening because the report is not here yet and I think when the report gets here we can digest it and I think there will be a series of actions taken,” he said. “I don’t know that I like this process where someone has a complaint then they can request a motion of non-confidence. So where do we stop?”

Reeve Emon did not provide any details of the rationale for his motion prior to the council meeting and unfortunately, the Leader went to press prior to the evening meeting so the results of his motion was not available for publication.