Slip-up by councillor forces Burlington to reveal litigation costs against developer


Published September 21, 2022 at 1:56 pm

A slip-up by Ward 2 councillor Lisa Kearns forced the City of Burlington to make public the budget for a fight with a developer at the Ontario Lands Tribunal.

Councillors at yesterday’s meeting waived solicitor-client privilege in order to release the initial legal budget related to ongoing litigation involving the appeals to the OLT for the development applications for 2020 Lakeshore Rd.

Earlier this year, council refused the rezoning application submitted by Burlington 2020 Lakeshore Inc. proposing a mixed-use development at the site of the current Waterfront Hotel. This decision the applicant to appeal to the OLT.

Council waived solicitor-client privilege and release the initial legal budget due to an inadvertent disclosure Kearns of the legal budget.

The initial legal budget for this litigation has been set at $500,000. In all other respects, solicitor-client privilege continues to apply to the legal strategy concerning 2020 Lakeshore Rd.

Upon learning of the inadvertent disclosure, Kearns took immediate and proactive steps to notify staff and council of the breach. She also directly contacted the Integrity Commissioner regarding this matter and apologized to council.

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