Posted October 8, 2014
This past should not be regarded as a criticism of the police. They have one of the toughest jobs in our society that is fraught with personal danger. It illustrates that senior police officers should keep their personal feelings to themselves.
The following is an example.
In her recently published election brochure, Mayor Farbridge received a glowing endorsement from Guelph’s outgoing Police Chief, Bryan Larkin.
The chief is quoted: “Karen Farbridge has proven she has the bold leadership, experience and vision to make Guelph a great place to work and live. I’m proud of our work together, resulting in Guelph having one of the lowest crime rates in all of Canada.”
It is signed Chief Bryan Larkin, Outgoing Chief of Police, Guelph.
My, my. So many questions about this uncensored love-in.
Guess the chief failed to absorb the Urbacon lawsuit fallout of some $15 million that occurred under Mayor Farbridge’s watch. That episode with more liability to come, seriously reflects on the management ability and leadership provided by the current mayor. Larkin must have missed the memo and/or the meeting.
First, what happened to the rule that public servants are forbidden to participate in Canadian elections, federal, provincial and municipal? There is a reason for it as it creates a bias that is unfair and can skew an election result. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.
In this case it is so obvious as to be embarrassing, for both parties but especially the departed chief.
Who initiated this endorsement? It was carried on the back page of the 45,000 Farbridge brochures distributed to every household in Guelph. When did the chief make the statement, before or after August 31 when he left the city?
Did the Mayor solicit the endorsement? Or, as an outgoing gesture, did the chief want to express his thanks for the mayor ram-rodding the $34 million police HQ renovation through council? That’s the one that started out as a $13 million renovation and morphed into a $34 million project with Chief Larkin as the point man.
Perhaps it was produced by an enthusiastic Farbridge campaign worker who thought it was a good idea to link the mayor with crime busting. Thereby achieving the alleged claim of having “one of the lowest crime rates in Canada”. That’s it, Karen Farbridge, crime fighter.
Or, is it possible this expert self-promoter, Bryan Larkin, believed it was his last chance to ingratiate himself with the head of the city, just in case the new gig in the Region of Waterloo didn’t work out?
Regardless, it was a stupid thing to do.
Bryan Larkin’s Guelph tenure was riddled with major police problems including the handling of the Jennifer Kovach fatality while on duty. Then there was the case of the officer who was convicted of stealing drugs from the evidence for personal use.
Larkin’s gone and the citizens are left with a $34 million bill.