It's a sad day at City Hall at the news Paul Hancock has resigned
CityCaucus.com has learned that on Friday Vancouver's City Clerk responsible for Freedom of Information requests Paul Hancock, Manager, Corporate Information & Privacy, has tendered his resignation. It is believed that Hancock did not have another job opportunity when he made this decision.
The reaction from sources within inside City Hall is a sense of sadness. Hancock's reputation as one of the most honourable public servants is well-known. A lawyer by training, Hancock always sought to uphold the principles of the Freedom of Information act despite urging by the City Manager Penny Ballem to delay response times, and her practice of destroying records and deleting emails.
"I didn't work directly with Paul," says a City Hall insider. "However, it was well known how frustrated he had become working for this administration. In many respects he might have been too principled, and his life might have been easier if he was willing to play along with the politics."
Hancock was on the receiving end of Ballem's tirades, and remained dignified despite enormous pressure by the Vision Vancouver government to obscure and stifle access to information. Several FOI requests made by CityCaucus.com have been delayed for months, and we have at least one dispute still being processed by the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner in Victoria.
There is now speculation that all FOI requests will become the responsibility of the City's legal department, which the City Manager believes that she has more control over.
Paul Hancock was the very embodiment of a principled non-partisan member of the public service, and all citizens of Vancouver have benefited from his work. Some media have suggested to us that it was Hancock who was holding up their requests, but in fact it was the Mayor's office and the City Manager who were responsible. He will be greatly missed both at City Hall and by people here at CityCaucus Tower.
This continues an expanding list of senior management who have left their posts during this term of government, and leaving a vacuum of leadership and institutional knowledge. The list includes Judy Rogers, Tom Timm, Dave Rudberg, Jody Andrews, James Ridge, Sue Mundick, Ray Holdgate, Kevin Ramsay, Cameron Gray, Patsy Sheer, Arc Tsisserev, Donald MacPherson, Barb Windsor, Rhonda Howard, Piet Rutgers, Mike Zora and others.
- post by Mike