Dalhousie councillor thrown out of council meeting — again
Profanity-laced insults hurled at Normand Pelletier after he booted Coun. Mickey Maloney from council session
A Dalhousie councillor was once again thrown out of a town meeting on Monday night, after refusing to apologize to the mayor and other members of council for allegedly swearing and insulting colleagues and staff.
Mayor Normand Pelletier had already ejected Coun. Mickey Maloney from one council meeting — on Nov. 20 — for allegedly abusive language.
When councillors in the small northern town gathered for their regular meeting Monday, Pelletier and Maloney got into a heated exchange when the mayor demanded the councillor apologize for the insults.
Maloney, who has tried to get the mayor to elaborate on the allegations, insisted he had nothing to apologize for.
But the mayor stood his ground, without elaborating.
"Coun. Maloney, [I] said it at the meeting and I'll say it again, you insulted members of the council."
I want you to leave this meeting. Not only this meeting but every committee meeting and public meeting.-Normand Pelletier , mayor of Dalhousie
Maloney interrupted, saying he never insulted anyone.
"I'm speaking," Pelletier said, with his finger pointed at Maloney.
"No, I'm speaking," Maloney responded.
Visibly frustrated, Pelletier asked Maloney if he was done and ordered him to leave the meeting.
"I want you to leave this meeting," the mayor said. "Not only this meeting but every committee meeting and public meeting.
"You're a paid councillor of the Town of Dalhousie and you're suspended."
As Maloney grabbed his belongings from the council table, he asked Pelletier if he worked for the Justice Department and was a sworn officer, to which the mayor said he was.
"Then you're breaking the law," Maloney said.
Outbursts from the public
The mayor's actions sparked an immediate reaction from some citizens watching the argument unfold.
As Maloney left the council chambers, some criticized the mayor and others hurled profanity-laced insults at him.
"The people voted him in," said one resident.
Pelletier told the observers not to make any more comments or they would have to leave.
"Are you going to throw me out too?" a man asked.
"Yes, I will," Pelletier said before the man started to swear at him.
During the exchange, other councillors appeared as if they were trying to ignore the spat between Maloney and Pelletier.
After the outburst ended, the first of a series of committee meetings started.
Escorted out of the meeting
When asked why he left the meeting, Maloney said he was told by RCMP beforehand that if he didn't leave, he would be escorted out.
Maloney said he plans to speak to his lawyer again and brief him on the latest developments. He said nothing in the Municipalities Act allowed the mayor to expel him the way he did.
"He never even took a meeting, council never even voted," Maloney said.
"He asked me to leave even before the meeting was even called to order."
At the next meeting, Maloney wants the mayor to prove what kind of insults he is supposed to have aimed at his colleagues.
"He made some statements at the last meeting, where he said I insulted people, I insulted business people. Let him name who I insulted."
He promised to be in his chair at the regular council meeting on Dec. 18.
"He's just digging the hole deeper for himself," Maloney said of the mayor. "He's breaking the law."
Pelletier said in a previous interview with CBC News that he had the authority under a town bylaw to expel Maloney and had the support of the remaining council.
The bylaw says, "any person who breaches the bylaw, behaves in a disorderly manner, or uses threatening or profane language in debate, may be required to leave the meeting at the discretion of the chair."