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Bidding Farewell to Nai Jaffer

Former Mayor lauds outgoing Public Works Manager

Nai Jaffer and Baloo, his comrade-in-arms

(Updated to include further commentary.)

Lions Bay Public Works Manager Nai Jaffer resigned this weekend, less than a week after The Watershed reported that he would be celebrating his seventh anniversary with Lions Bay on May 3.


Jaffer brought a wealth of experience and skills to the village with over 22 years of management experience and more than 10 years as a field employee in municipal operations. (The Watershed's profile of Jaffer and his Works Crew is here).


The Watershed has reached out to Lions Bay's mayor and council for their comments and has also approached former mayor Ron McLaughlin, who worked with Jaffer in both his role as councillor, and then later as mayor.


“Under Nai’s leadership, the village was able to attract talented, qualified, and skilled individuals to the Lions Bay Public Works team and raise the level of service provided to residents,” says McLaughlin. “Did you know that the Village hasn’t had a single boil water advisory in Nai’s tenure? Long term residents remember what that experience was like, and are grateful for his expertise.”


During his time on council, McLaughlin got to know Jaffer very well. “His skill set, positive demeanour, quick attention to issues, and popularity are going to be long remembered,” says McLaughlin.


Councillor Neville Abbott also commented today, noting specifically that it is his personal opinion and that he is not speaking on behalf of council. "This is the news I was dreading," he said, "because Nai Jaffer is the last management staff member with critical knowledge of current and future infrastructure projects and other municipal matters."


Abbott stated that in his four and a half years as a Lions Bay Councillor, the one reliable constant has been Nai Jaffer. "His knowledge and years of municipal experience have been an indispensable support for me. His timely, thorough, detailed reports demonstrate clearly his depth of knowledge and abilities. I’ve always been impressed by his loyalty to his staff and calm leadership."


Abbott added that Jaffer has recently been providing continuity to council in areas that were not part of his job description. "I think we’re all about to find out what Nai has provided over and above his role. I'll miss his reasoned, informed approach and willingness to assist councillors in their decision making, but I wish him well in his new position. Our loss is their gain."


Jaffer’s departure brings the total of departed staff, appointees and council members to nine since November 1, 2022.


His last day in the office will be April 25. “We’ll miss his knowledge and guidance on operations and infrastructure,” says McLaughlin. “But we wish him all the best. A fond 'goodbye' to you, Nai, from all of us.“

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I wanted to write this here as other articles had comments "closed" but wanted to point out something that should be obvious to most residents: publications/media outlets like the Vancouver Sun, the Globe and Mail, CTV News, CNN, and YES, The Watershed are not sanctioned or endorsed by municipal, provincial or federal governments.. In a free democracy - they should NOT be sanctioned. Communist nations and dictatorships like the old Soviet Union controlled the media and released sanctioned news articles for public consumption.


i know I am stating the obvious but I read comments re The Watershed not being sanctioned by the Village of Lions Bay in Council Minutes or in comments elsewhere.

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kc dyer
kc dyer
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From Myron Loutet:

Goodbye Nai, Hayley, Dave, Pam, Peter, and two Public Works employees. Your energy and sense of humour will always remain in our hearts.

Your Lions Bay family wish you all the best health and happiness in your future careers.

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I know it's tempting to bring up political issues (and I totally understand why everyone is frustrated and concerned). I just have this to say as a resident, homeowner and taxpayer:


When all of these senior staff members leave, what impact does that have to how moneys are managed including taxpayer dollars and grants, and how well-managed and efficient this will be moving forward with knowledge and experience leaving?


When all of these senior staff members leave, what impact does that have on quality of life as it applies to public works, maintenance, new homes/permits, drinking water, public services, etc.?


With all of these senior managers deciding to leave, what new risks are created to manage infrastructure with financial efficiency?


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Thanks Norm. I get there are differing opinions and innuendos about how the current mayor and Council have operated, and as we saw leading up to the election last November, same thing for the previous regime.

I want to go past that. Those are MY TAX dollars. This is the VALUE of MY property. I want my home to exist in a community with solid public services, clean drinking water, trees that don't fall on my house coming from public lands,


If you are the mayor or a Council member, let's stop the bickering please and let's care about doing the right thing for residents.


Key managers are leaving and it is putting essential services and our taxpayer dollars…

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Thank you Neville for your honest personal comments about the great loss the Village now faces with losing Nai.

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I think what’s playing out in the Village somewhat mirrors the pendulum swing we see in politics all the time: the “cut red-tape/cut staff” crowd won the vote and the “rules are there for a reason/professional public service” advocates lost. Throw in 4 counsellors who seem to have very different, possibly irreconcilable views on how meetings and decision-making should occur and their roles as elected officials and it’s a mess. I think also the 4 current members of council underestimated how much Peter DeJong was liked and respected by his staff team and what a domino effect his dismissal would have. Like Norma, I’m mad and sad for our Village… and even sadder to understand that some folks are cheering…

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