Wetaskiwin City Councillor Joe Branco

Wetaskiwin City Councillor is being censured for inappropriate comments

Motions made in City Council regarding Councillor Joe Branco’s breach of Council Code of Conduct.

In the June 8, regular City Council meeting, Mayor Tyler Gandam read multiple motions pertaining to Councillor Joe Branco.

“Certain remarks made by Councillor Branco regarding a City of Wetaskiwin employee were inappropriate, disrespectful and discriminatory and fell short of the standards expected of members of Council for the City of Wetaskiwin,” Gandam read in the first motion regarding Branco.

The motion continues, outlining that these remarks are in violation of sections 8.2, 8.3, and 8.4 of the Council Code of Conduct Bylaw. These sections of the Bylaw regulate:

• 8.2. Members shall treat one another, employees of the Municipality and members of the public with courtesy, dignity and respect and without abuse, bullying or intimidation.

• 8.3. No Member shall use indecent, abusive, or insulting words or expressions toward another Member, any employee of the Municipality or any member of the public.

• 8.4. No Member shall speak in a manner that is discriminatory to any individual based on the person’s race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, source of income, family status or sexual orientation.

Another motion pertaining to Branco regards him revealing confidential council information without authorization, specifically breaching section 9.2 and 9.3 of the Council Code of Conduct Bylaw.

These clauses specify that Council shall not disclose confidential information regarding the security of the property of the Municipality and employment and labour regulations.

In his readings of the motions Gandam continued, stating, “Councillor Branco is hereby censured for his inappropriate behaviour and misconduct and Council expects him to honour the oath of office he took and abide by the Council Code of Conduct Bylaw throughout the remainder of his term of office.”

Councillor Branco will also be required to attend confidentiality and sensitivity training following the passing of these motions.

The City has not commented further on the issue.

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