Qualicum Beach Coun. Neil Horner made a public apology at the Oct. 2 council meeting for leaving a bag of dog feces on the town’s bylaw enforcement officer’s desk. — NEWS file photo

Island councillor apologizes for crappy “joke”

A Qualicum Beach city councillor left a bag of dog poop on a bylaw officer’s desk, later apologizes.

In an “epic example of stupid airheadedness,” Qualicum Beach Coun. Neil Horner has made a public apology for leaving a bag of dog poop on the town’s bylaw officer’s desk.

At Monday’s regular council meeting, Coun. Neil Horner made a “heartfelt” public apology to bylaw enforcement officer Don Marshall.

Horner said a few weeks ago, the town’s bylaw officer informed Horner that a member of his “inner circle had been seen walking the family dog and not picking up the feces” and added it wasn’t the first such report to the town.

Not wanting to embarrass the person, Horner said, he asked if it would be OK if he went and cleaned it up, which Horner said Marshall agreed to. Horner said he then went and cleaned it up and threw the bag on the back of his bike “and feeling quite pleased with myself, went for coffee.”

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“I stopped myself before I did, however, thinking I would show Mr. Marshall the bag to show that I had indeed followed up with my pledge to clean it up,” Horner told the council chamber Monday, adding it would be a “light-hearted little thing” and give the two a little chuckle.

“However, when I got to his desk, he wasn’t there and in an epic example of stupid airheadedness, I left the bag on his desk,” Horner said. “What was I thinking? I don’t think I was.”

Horner said he was in no way trying to upset anyone or make any kind of comment. He also said he was sincerely sorry about his actions and “quite sick about this.”

Marshall referred comment to his representative with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

“This was investigated under the Town of Qualicum Beach bullying and harassment policy, and it was supposed to remain confidential,” said Laurence Amy of CUPE chapter 401. “We don’t want to jeopardize the confidentiality of the investigation.”

In an inquiry to the town, CAO Daniel Sailland sent The NEWS the town’s policy on anti-bullying and harassment. The policy applies to all current employees of the town, the fire department, full- and part-time employees, casual, volunteer, contract, permanent and temporary employees. The policy doesn’t state that it applies to elected officials such as a councillor.

Story tips:

lauren.collins@pqbnews.com

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