A judge has ruled that Colleen Tatum can remain a Wood Buffalo councillor.
Council voted back in March to take Tatum to court after it was discovered that she had failed to pay her 2015 property taxes to the tune of $6700, a violation of the Municipal Governance Act and Local Authorities Election Act.
At the time, Tatum said she wasn’t aware of the non-payment and has since paid the back-taxes.
Appearing in a Fort McMurray courtroom Thursday morning, her defence noted this was an honest mistake made by an employee of her small business who handles the family’s mail.
The two sides came to an agreement that Tatum can remain a councillor for Ward 1.
Speaking after the hearing, Tatum says if an agreement hadn’t been made the case would have gone to trial.
“Which would, of course, be lengthy and cost more money to everyone and more than likely would have came out with the same result. So this is a favourable result. I get to continue my work on council and we save money, which is great as well.”
Tatum notes the court’s decision is still bittersweet.
“I don’t feel that it served the public in any way for us to go through this process, but at the same time I respect the reasons it was brought forward and I’m happy with the decision.”
She adds steps have been taken to make sure another situation like this never happens again.