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Port Moody council divided along gender lines over whether mayor should go on leave while charged with sexual assault

Straight 2019-10-09 22:43:08

The mayor of Port Moody, Rob Vagramov, has not indicated if he'll abide by a council motion calling for him to take a leave of absence.

Last night, four female members of council—Diana Dilworth, Megan Lahti, Amy Lubik, and Zoë Royer—voted in favour of this while Vagramov faces a charge of sexual assault.

Councillors Hunter Madsen and Steve Milani opposed the motion, which was brought forward by Dilworth.

She emphasized that the motion was not linked to whether the mayor is innocent or guilty and merely sought his departure while the case is before the court.

Several speakers before council also called for the mayor to step aside.

Left to right: Port Moody councillors Diana Dilworth, Megan Lahti, and Steve Milani, Mayor Rob Vagramov, and councillors Hunter Madsen, Zoë Royer, and Amy Lubick.

The alleged offence took place in 2015 in Coquitlam. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Vagramov was elected in October 2018 after serving one term on council.

He took a leave of absence after being charged in March but then returned to work as mayor in September.

Vagramov claimed at the time that the charge had been scaled back from an indictable offence to a "summary matter".

He's due back in court next month.