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10 Year Limit on Tribunal Appointments: Yea or Nay

Ontario Admin Appointment Limits  

15 members have voted

  1. 1. Is the limit a good idea?

    • Yup!
      5
    • Nope!
      10
  2. 2. What do you foresee as the biggest factor affected by the 10-year limit?

    • independence
      8
    • decision quality
      4
    • timeliness
      1
    • something else! (don't leave me hanging bro...fill it out in thread)
      2


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The Ontario ombudsman has “serious concerns” about the possible impact of a rule putting a 10-year limit on the terms of administrative tribunal appointments, according to the annual report released by his office last week.

 

 

http://www.lawtimesnews.com/201508034850/headline-news/10-year-limit-on-tribunal-appointments-could-have-serious-negative-impact

 

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I can't picture what problem the ten year limit was meant to solve.

People don't like career bureaucrats unless they're in uniform (eg. military, police, judges etc)

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I can't imagine the reason for term limits in general. I mean, can you imagine this applying in any other context, "Look - we know you've spent the last 10 years on this job. And you've accumulated huge amounts of expertise and experience which are relied upon by our clients and partners [read in this case - parties and the judiciary]... but look it's been ten years. Yes, we realize you're still fantastically qualified and highly regarded - but nope, time's up. Goodbye"

 

It just seems wrongheaded that not only will some of the most experienced people be excluded from jobs - but that this exclusion is a feature and not a bug. 

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I can see a 10 year appointment that can be renewed, but a firm term limit? Insanity.

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People don't like career bureaucrats unless they're in uniform (eg. military, police, judges etc)

 

So, with the possible exception of judges (who knows what they're hiding under those robes), people only like career bureaucrats when they have access to high-end weaponry? Interesting...

Edited by FruitLupes
  • Like 1

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Looking at the OLRB Vice-Chairs, most of the ten year people are private arbitrators, so its not like they are just sucking on the government teat (if that is the concern here).  

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In BC initial appointments are 3 years and subsequent appointments are 3 to 5 years for most of our commissions and tribunals. Is Ontario similar? If it is I'm really not sure what the purpose of the 10 year cap is. You'd still have independence muddled for the first two appointments as people sought reappointment.

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Given that the vote is nearly 50/50 - it's odd nearly all the comments are on the "nay" side. I was wondering if someone who voted yay to term limits could provide their rationale?

 

As I said, it seems odd to me that you would, prima facie, just exclude anyone from an appointment when they have a load of experience, capability, and expertise in a field. I would definitely support 10 year renewable terms (or heck, I'd actually go with 3-5 year terms that are renewable) - it just seems to me that term limits are generally a bad idea.

 

Earlier we discussed other public employees and it bears questioning - would those that vote for term limits here also advocate for term limits for police officers? Fire fighters? Foreign affairs officers? CBSA agents? What is the line, and why is the line there?

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I think the rationale for the ten year appointment is that you get fresh blood flowing in. Depending upon the tribunal, experience is overrated. It also allows the tribunal to clear out deadwood, people that are just phoning it in. I have a chunk of admin experience and a number of appointments are often political deadweights, i.e. they show up but they don't contribute. A lot of this though, as others have pointed out, could be done with term limits that can be renewed but if you have someone who has a lot of political connections or clout, you may never be able to get rid of them or at least rid of them when they really really really need to go.

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