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The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the Town of Grimsby to discuss a municipally-controlled corporation, Niagara Power Inc. The meeting was closed under the security of the property exception. Council discussed whether to obtain a valuation of a municipally-owned corporation. The Ombudsman found that the exception applies to discussions about protecting municipally-owned corporeal and incorporeal property from loss or damage. The discussion about valuation did not fit within the exception for the security of the property of the municipality since there was no apparent threat to the municipally-controlled corporation.
The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the City of Port Colborne to discuss disposing of its shares in a shared services provider. The meeting was closed under the security of the property exception. Council cited the exception because the municipality’s bargaining position might have been affected if details of the discussion were made public. The security of the property exception is narrowly construed. The Ombudsman found that the fact that any discussion in open session may have decreased the value of the shares was insufficient to bring the matter within the security of the property exception.