Candidates running for election to the Victoria municipal council in 1865 were required to be property owners. While Abner Francis was on the “Real Estate Assessment Roll July 1, 1864 to June 30,1865” as owner of two properties, the 1862-1863 Property Assessment Roll was used to determine eligibility, and Francis did not own property in that year. Because of this discrepancy, Francis resigned the day after he was sworn in.
On November 17th, an editorial in the Colonist questioned why the most recent assessment roll was not used. “The assessment of 1862-3 is no more than a piece of waste paper …. The whole affair from beginning to end is a ‘mass’ of the most outrageous absurdity… ”