The city was named as co-defendants in the claim, as the Hamilton Waterfront Trust did not have liability insurance to handle the claim. It was learned that the cost to taxpayers was above the $127,000.00 settlement amount, as the city also incurred the costs of outside legal representation, over a number of years. Presumably there were also costs associated with staff time spent on the issue.
The Hamiltonian thus asked the Executive Director of the Hamilton Waterfront Trust (HWT), Werner Plessl, and copied Ward 6 Councillor Tom, Jackson (who sits on the HWT's board) and Ward 2 Councillor Jason Farr (who also sits on the HWT board) the following: , Can you advise as to whether the Hamilton Waterfront Trust has since purchased adequate insurance,and if so, when the insurance protection took effect? Can you also assure Hamiltonians that there are measures in place to ensure that any service operating out of the HWT, is properly insured, whether the Trust provides the service directly, or allows the service to be provided.
The nexus of this question to the public interest is apparent. Hamiltonians ought to know that appropriate provisions are in place to ensure that any future claims are handled in the most efficient and cost effective way, so as to avoid undue financial burden on the taxpaying public. They also ought to know whether there are provisions in place to ensure that the HWT and/or the City cannot be named in a claim against any other business or service operating via authorization or allowance of the HWT.
The following is the city's Accountability and Transparency Policy (click here), which is in response to amendments to the Municipal Act, 2001 Respecting: Accountability and Transparency Policy (CL07010 / LS07025) (City Wide)
To date, we have not received a reply from Mr. Plessl. We have not received a reply from Ward 2 Councillor Jason Farr. Ward 6 Councillor Tom Jackson has sent us a reply, but he did not answer the question. Mr. Plessl and Clrs Farr and Jackson continue to be welcome to address this question.
Until Hamiltonians are advised accordingly, the questions surrounding HWT's insurance provisions or other mechanisms, remain unsolved mysteries.