Peter Kelly won't re-up

In wake of Coast expose, Halifax mayor announces he won't seek re-election.

Halifax mayor Peter Kelly announced Wednesday that he will not seek re-election in the October election.

““I feel that, after 27 years of public service, I have made my contribution to the good of the community to the very best of my ability and it is time to seek new horizons,” wrote Kelly in a press release.

Kelly’s statement comes six days after The Coast’s expose of Kelly’s questionable involvement in the estate of Mary Thibeault, a Halifax woman who died in Florida in 2004. (See “A Trust Betrayed,” February 16.)

Our article detailed how Kelly is named executor of Thibeault’s estate, which is valued at over a half million dollars; that seven years after her death, the charities named as heirs in Thibeault’s will have not received any of the money they’re due; it questioned the accuracy of documents Kelly submitted to the probate court; and, illustrated with copies of cheques written to Kelly and his son, it explained how there is a dispute over $145,000 removed from Thibeault’s personal bank account after she had died.

After our article appeared, Kelly eschewed public appearances and other local media outlets began following the story; Wednesday morning, the Globe & Mail picked up the story nationally and the Chronicle-Herald wrote a scathing editorial calling on Kelly to explain himself. That afternoon, Kelly released his statement.

“Mayor Kelly acknowledged that there had been stumbles along the way, not least being the issue of his duties as executor to the estate of his late friend, Mary Thibeault,” reads the press release.

“I am not making any excuses,” said Kelly in the release. “Whatever problems have arisen have been because of my own tardiness and I am in the process of fulfilling her instructions. Everything is accounted for and will be distributed according to her wishes.”

In the press release, Kelly says that he intends to serve out the remainder of his term.

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