A court ruling has allowed trustee Michelle Parks to resume her seat on the Catholic school board.
But it didn’t come easily.
“Trying to resolve this matter has cost me thousands of dollars, hundreds of hours of research, phone calls and appointments,” she said after an Ontario court judge granted her appeal on May 11.
“It should be pointed out that everyone I came into contact with agreed this matter should be overturned, but didn’t know how to go about it.”
The Sarnia trustee topped the polls when re-elected to the St. Clair Catholic District School Board in last October’s municipal elections.
But she failed to file her election expenses by the March 27 deadline, as required, and was told by the city clerk she must step down.
Parks said called city hall last November and was told by an unidentified staff member that she didn’t need to file a report because she didn’t have any election expenses.
“A mistake was made on both ends,” said Parks, a YMCA community program co-ordinator.
The court found the paper work was now in order and said she could resume her duties with the board.
But the reinstatement came about only after she contacted a lawyer, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs, the MPP’s office, Catholic Trustees’ Association, the Attorney General, London Divisional Court and the Superior Court.
Everything happens for a reason, Parks said.
“I have learned an invaluable lesson in all of this and will fight even harder to help parents, students and anyone that faces the road block that I have faced during this ordeal.”