Petrolia CAO resigns after probe
Manny Baron was recently the subject of conflict of interest allegations
Petrolia CAO Manny Baron has resigned, town council announced Tuesday.
In a news release, officials said the town’s chief administrative officer and clerk was no longer in Petrolia’s employ, effective immediately.
Mayor John McCharles said he would not comment on the circumstances leading to Baron’s resignation.
“The council is grateful to Mr. Baron for his assistance in enabling the town to enhance Main Street, build a new wastewater treatment plant and establish the Central Lambton Family Health Team,” McCharles said.
“We appreciate his contributions to the town in this regard and wish him well.”
Baron, chief administrative officer since July 2012, was recently the subject of conflict of interest allegations after The Independent reported he’d been charging the town rent, and utilities in lieu of rent, on facilities used for town purposes.
The Petrolia and Central Lambton paper reported Baron did not disclose to town council he owned those facilities through a numbered company.
John Fleming was hired as a third-party investigator to review the situation. He has presented his report to council, but it won’t be made public “since it pertains to personnel matters,” the town’s news release says.
Mandi Pearson is the town’s interim chief administrative officer and clerk until the position is permanently filled, officials said, noting the firm of Tim L Dobbie Consulting Ltd. has been retained for the search.