Former Iqaluit mayor’s trip to Iceland cost the city nearly $10,000


The former mayor of Iqaluit’s trip to attend a conference in Iceland that he never showed up for cost the city nearly $10,000.

Kenny Bell had a trip planned to Reykjavik, Iceland from October 11-17 to represent Iqaluit as a delegate and speaker at the recent Arctic Circle conference.

But the city said he missed the sessions. Then, on Tuesday, the mayor posted on Twitter that he was stepping down from his post and did not give a reason.

On Thursday, Bell posted on his new Twitter account that he “could have easily gone to the only speaking event and not paid a penny, but because I decided I was going to quit, I didn’t want to take up space and I will pay the city back for the costs.”

His new Twitter profile has been made private.

The city said Bell has yet to reimburse the costs.

The breakdown of his expenses for the trip, according to city economic development officer Geoffrey Byrne, includes $4,691.20 for flights, $3,938.18 for accommodation and $855.40 for fees. registration for the conference.

Byrne said the board was discussing what would happen if Bell didn’t reimburse the city, and he had no further information on that at this time.

In a press release Tuesday afternoon, the city said Deputy Mayor Solomon Awa would serve as mayor and councillor. Kyle Sheppard will serve as deputy mayor “until council decides or until the next municipal election.” This election should take place next fall.

Under the Nunavut Elections Act, council can appoint an elected councilor as mayor for the remainder of the term or hold a by-election.

Byrne said the city should decide how it will proceed at an upcoming council meeting.


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