August 1, 2015


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RM accused of corruption, fraud

RCMP also investigate allegations of secret surveillance, harassment

RM of La Broquerie Population: 2,900 people

Location: About 15 minutes' drive southeast of Steinbach

Council: One reeve, elected in 2006, and six councillors, most elected within the last six years.

History: La Broquerie's troubles go way back. In 2005, then-reeve Ken Mantie was locked out of council chambers during a dispute over why a local hotel was getting snow removed from its parking lots by the RM free of charge. That incident, along with many other complaints by residents, sparked an investigation by Auditor General Carol Bellringer that found major problems with the way the RM was run, including con­flicts of interest, shoddy expenses account­ing, poor record-keeping and spotty policies and bylaws. In 2006, just as Bellringer was starting her review, the Coalition for Better Government in La Broquerie fielded a slate of candidates in the civic election. Reeve Marielle Wiebe, Coun. Edwood Oswald and Coun. Ron Hamilton effectively won control of council, fired the chief administrative of­ficer and ultimately hired Lori Wood as CAO. Now, the three coalition members are the main targets of Wood's allegations.

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