The province is in the process of setting up a Labrador Regional Appeal board for the first time and Mayor Wayne Button of Labrador City is happy to hear that. Well, happy but frustrated.
Button first started asking about where appeals to council decisions would be heard earlier this year.
“I started asking our planner and developer about how long it took for an appeal to be heard and I was told about two to three months,” he said. “We had one that was at six months then so I thought that wasn’t good enough. So I set up a meeting with the minister.”
He said a meeting took place with Municipal Affairs and he followed up with emails and now it’s been close on a year since that appeal was made, Nov. 23, 2017, and Button still doesn’t when or where it will be held.
Traditionally, appeals arising from Labrador have been heard by the western board, which meets in Deer Lake a few times a year. Municipal Affairs Minister Andrew Parsons told The Aurora in an interview last month he didn’t see why there wasn’t a Labrador board all along and he’s been working to set that up.
According to an Access to Information request made by The Aurora, there are at least three individuals that have had their names forwarded to the Independent Appointments Commission, which would make quorum.
Button said he was told in June the members had been chosen and orientation was planned. With the summer and vacations he figured it would take a bit of time but he’s still not sure if the board is up and running or when it will meet.
He said he hopes when the appeal board is up and running it will move quicker.
“Anything is quicker than what’s happening now,” he said. “I’m assuming they’re carry out the process of having this Labrador board to make it faster.”
He plans to meet with Parsons about the issue the next time he’s on the island and will bring it up with Labrador West MHA Graham Letto.