LIVE BLOG: City Council Meeting for April 25, 2016

This may be the most contentious Guelph City Council of the year yet with a lot of potentially dramatic issues on the table. You can click here for the amended agenda from City Hall, and you can click here to read Politico’s preview of tonight’s meeting. For the complete blow-by-blow of tonight’s council meeting, you can follow me on Twitter, or follow along below via Storify.

Guelph City Council Meeting – April 25, 2016

Live blog from the meeting starting at 7 pm.

  1. At City Hall. Looks like there will be a lot of community interaction tonight. Could be a long one.
  2. There are 15 delegations alone for the Community Energy Initiative update.
  3. Council is slowly trickling into the chambers…
  4. Not yet discussed CAO or Downtown property. Closed Session will conti new after
  5. Metrolinx: Direction to staff
    OMB: Direction to staff
    Neg Variance: New info received, staff follow-up
    Feb 29: staff given direction.
  6. Presentation from Franco Vaccarino, President & Vice Chancellor of @uofg kicks things off with presentation.
  7. The presentation is called “The University and City – Building Community Together.”
  8. University going through “reflective process” as part of renewal. First in 20 years, says Vaccarino
  9. Theme emerging fro 1100 conversations: deep connections between university and the city.
  10. Clear message: more opportunities and possibilities to tap in to. Gain higher profile nationally and globally, says Vaccarino
  11. Vaccarino drops a Trump bomb. Impact of UofG is “huge”.
  12. 1K acres of campus space, 400 acres make up the arboretum.
  13. Vaccarino going over @uofg accolades. Probably an easy sell for this crowd.
  14. Vaccarino says that Guelph is an “It place”
  15. Safety a big factor for @uofg. It’s important to parents to know that #Guelph is one of Canada’s safest cities.
  16. City/Uni partnership has encouraged business retention in Guelph, says Vaccarino.
  17. About turning knowledge into action. Greatest minds in the world at @uofg.
  18. .@GuelphJazz , @emwf important culture events with connections to the @uofg. Important synergy btw city and university.
  19. Universities lifting Cities/Cities lifting universities.
  20. Strat plan a chance to revisit identity and sense of common purpose, says Vaccarino.
  21. Vaccarino will share draft document with mayor, councillors before moving on the final.
  22. Mayor @CamGuthrie notes appreciation to Vaccarino for the report. Gets a round of applause.
  23. Next up, report of the Integrity Commissioner Robert Swayze. Big issue #1.
  24. Swayze says report speaks for itself. No councillor should ever say anything about closed session.
  25. Cllr Billings asks how much the report costs. Swayze doesn’t know
  26. Billings asks if any member so of council were interviewed. They were not.
  27. Cllr Gibson asks about protocol and due diligence about the meeting in question.
  28. Was the proper protocol followed? Gibson wants to prove accusation was disinformation.
  29. Swayze: made no accusations about protocol. Dealing only with disclosures by 3 members.
  30. Cllr Piper, who was named in the complaint has question about principles. Who filed the complaint?
  31. Piper understands why someone would want to be anonymous when making complaint…
  32. …Also fine with Swayze not interviewing those complained against.
  33. Piper does not like that she was named in a complaint w/o knowledge. Found out through Twitter last week.
  34. Swayze: Piper makes good points. It’s his fault. Should have given her report in advanced.
  35. …On the other hand, he found her not in fault so – you know…
  36. Swayze says he though Piper and Allt were defending selves for being accused of breaking quorum. Anonymous source said too much tho.
  37. Swayze felt anonymous source was talking about substance of meeting. Piper did not.
  38. Piper clarifies that councillors could go into closed meeting and approve disclosures in open session. Swayze agrees.
  39. Piper says she feels like council might owe it to citizens to have that discussion later.
  40. Cllr Salisbury asks about what counts as public and confidential information now.
  41. Cllrs walking our and loss of quorum was public, says Swayze. Salisbury wants know about info that staff barred from meeting.
  42. Can’t talk about what was discussed, decided or info pertaining to that Swayze says.
  43. Salisbury wants to get clarification that proper procedure was followed.
  44. Guthrie says that a motion is not necessary. There’s already a public report.
  45. Gibson says there’s a public report now that says that proper protocol was followed. The minutes passed.
  46. Gibson says the public was mislead and wants person to come forward.
  47. Piper says there were nuances of the meeting that need to be made public. Wants to speak openly about the minutes.
  48. Clerk says that Piper’s reason doesn’t count as an exemption under municipal act.
  49. Guthrie says “caution” means “proceed with caution”. Don’t need a motion. Piper says she will wait for Mayor to make judgments.
  50. Salisbury says he was not quoted as part of report for the article posted in “Guelph Today”
  51. Its an email from Jan 20. Looking for clarity about purpose of meeting, and forbidding of exec team. Suggests he provide info.
  52. Salisbury wrote that he did;t know why they were meeting. Asked for summery.
  53. Salisbury reading email he wrote to city clerk. Felt the meeting opened up city to liability.
  54. At this point the exec team were allowed to join meeting, but key docs were not provided, says Salisbury.
  55. “Outcome unfortunate and utterly avoidable” wrote Salisbury about lockout.
  56. The he contacted me. Told me there was nothing he could say about meeting, personal feelings.
  57. Purpose of meeting was to discuss GMHI. At no time did he disclosed any of these matter, says Salisbury.
  58. Salisbury says his concern was purely about management, and liability.
  59. Leak of info a serious problem with “this administration” says Salisbury.
  60. Gibson says the integrity of blogger (i.e.: me) got called into question.
  61. Salisbury said he had a brief conversation with me, does not know who the anonymous source is.
  62. Allt calls this the biggest scandal since Sona.
  63. Email Allt responded to ended up on the blog of Gerry Barker. The emailer and Barker both on board of Grassroots Guelph
  64. Most bloggers = Mad magazine/Enquirer, says Allt.
  65. Allt calls mayor’s call to keep exec staff out of the meet “Draconian”
  66. To hold closed meet with min. notice is unacceptable says Allt. Wettstein and Hofland on vacation at the time.
  67. Allt asks what discussion in the meeting broke the rules of the closed meeting rules.
  68. Allt asks, how does council work more effectively. How do we stop the leaks.
  69. Some want a rerun of the last municipal election, says Allt.
  70. Allt says that he’s not going to ask how much the investigation costs. It’s the right of every citizen to call one.
  71. Wettstein says he doesn’t have to recall info from the meeting. Some laughs.
  72. Wettstein says the approbate process didn’t happen in the first place.
  73. Wettstein says he’s not looking for further investigation.
  74. Gibson points out that Allt responded to my blog. Allt points out I sit in the press gallery.
  75. Gibson also points out that Wettstein voted in favour of the minutes of that meeting.
  76. “5 of you decided for yourselves did not want to hold that meeting.” says Gibson. Still haven’t had that meeting.
  77. Gibson believes council should vote to continue investigation.
  78. Bell says it’s unfortunate that the 5 councillors do not agree with the city professionals that procedure was properly followed.
  79. Bell says it will be decided by 7-6 vote. Wants general public to know at some point what GMHI and District Energy are on every agenda.
  80. Wettstein says council did discuss the report. Supported the minutes b/c they were accurate. Doesn’t mean the process was correct.
  81. No reason why we wouldn’t vote for minutes, says Piper. Record of what happened.
  82. Piper says they all felt the meeting was in order. Councillors that left stayed in that meeting for a period of time.
  83. Concerns began to be raised about conduct of the meeting.
  84. Talking about 2 diff things: 1) how meeting was prepared and 2) how meeting was handled says Piper. She knows why she left.
  85. Piper agrees with Wettstein. “We’re airing our dirty laundry in public” and maybe that should happen.
  86. Piper: we have serious problems with leaks of other meetings, up to last week.
  87. Violation of closed session privilege puts all of us at risk, says Piper.
  88. Hofland says she can’t speak to the meeting, disappointed that mayor called it while she was away.
  89. MacKinnon wants to clarify that no one on council has admitted they’re the anonymous source.
  90. Salisbury says he doesn’t believe he had disclosed any confidential information. Takes full ownership for that.
  91. Salisbury says he will tell you to your face if he has a problem with you, doesn’t hide behind anonymity.
  92. MacKinnon thanks Sailsbury for “reclassifying the clarification.”
  93. Salisbury says that the phrase “skillfully hung out to dry” did not come from him. Doesn’t know what that means.
  94. Salisbury says he may have vented to me “a little bit.”
  95. Guthrie says he doesn’t want this to go on too much further.
  96. Downer says in 13 years never felt the need to leave meeting until that night.
  97. Downer points out that the 5 have been exonerated by integrity commissioner.
  98. Guthrie getting ready to call vote to receive report. Hofland moves.
  99. Gibson: Does this preclude further investigation? Been suffering since the election with leaks.
  100. Gibson says council should make person own up to mistake. Guthrie says a subsequent motion can be made.
  101. Wettstein says council’s done a great job tonight investigating themselves. Further investigation not necessary.
  102. Guthrie asks clerk to clarify that procedure was followed. With that info, Swayze determined no wrong doing in calling that meet.
  103. Guthrie adds allegation that he barred people from the meeting also false.
  104. The source proactively went out to the media, says Guthrie, and lied about him. He takes that “very, very seriously.”
  105. Guthrie says he has every right to share information for meeting. All it was was a sharing of info.
  106. The problem, he says, some members of council want info and some that don’t. Ones that don’t leave meetings.
  107. Quorum was denied, Guthrie wishes he could have shared the info.
  108. This is now up for public debate: was the meeting called for good reason? Who’s right? Guthrie says he know he did his job.
  109. Report drifted into accusations against mayor rather than about complaint.
  110. Bell would like Integrity Commish to investigate leaks further. Identify source of the leak. Van Hellemond seconds.
  111. Piper wants IC to look beyond the leak to Politico, has to be the whole scope.
  112. Piper believes more than 1 person is being looked for. Has to be bigger than one IC complaint.
  113. Bell clarifies that this is for the one complaint against IC, the Politico quote.
  114. Piper says she can’t support investigation into single complaint, wants to amend Bell motion.
  115. Gibson says he can’t support amendment, no complaint has been made.
  116. Gibson says it’s “martial law” on this issue.
  117. MacKinnon says he also won’t support amendment for same reasons as Gibson.
  118. Can go back into a year and a half of leaks if we want, says MacKinnon. Not prepared to do that tonight.
  119. MacKinnon says it should be easy to get to the bottom of the leak.
  120. Wettstein says “skillfully hung to dry” is 5 words out of 100s of greater consequence.
  121. Wettstein says he’d rather spend a little more money and do this right.
  122. Salisbury says the meeting and potatoes of I.C. been discussed. If he turns out to be the anonymous source, he’ll save the money now.
  123. If council wants to decide on sanctions against Salisbury, that’s fine, he says.
  124. If council wants to decide on sanctions against Salisbury, that’s fine, he says.
  125. He takes exception that the info he said broke confidentiality.
  126. He takes exception that the info he said broke confidentiality.
  127. Guthrie admits confusion. Is Salisbury the source or not?
  128. Guthrie admits confusion. Is Salisbury the source or not?
  129. Salisbury says these were personal feelings he was offering, not for print. Simply concerned about the process.
  130. Salisbury says these were personal feelings he was offering, not for print. Simply concerned about the process.
  131. Someone in the gallery says “resign” as Salisbury speaks.
  132. Salisbury says comments were probably better kept to himself, but it wasn’t a breach.
  133. Hofland says she’s not interested in pursuing this matter. Suggests hiring a facilitator for team building if money is spent.
  134. Salisbury decides that he wants to set away. Disagrees with I.C. but he is left open to sanctions so he’s departing the chamber.
  135. Vote on the amendment. Broader investigation into leaks failed 10-2. Allt and Piper are the 2. Salisbury not present.
  136. MacKinnon ask if Bell would consider withdrawing motion now that council knows.
  137. Bell says he didn’t hear Salisbury say he’s the source of the statements. Wasn’t explicit enough.
  138. Bell says he didn’t hear an apology and that Salisbury thinks he didn’t do anything wrong. Not going to withdraw motion.
  139. Wettstein says we’re “not going to get a pound of flesh.”
  140. Billings asks if any other councillor would like to come forward to confess to leaks to Guelph Speaks.
  141. Billings says we can read it today. She thinks it’s relevant.
  142. Guthrie says that Salisbury has summed up the problem. Doesn’t want to “waste money” on this anymore.
  143. MacKinnon says confidentiality is important. He’s satisfied with what Salisbury said. Wants to pose largest punishment possible.
  144. That’s 90 days w/o pay. Someone in gallery shouts “What?”
  145. Guthrie believes recommendation from I.C. comes first. Based on his findings.
  146. City clerk says council can impose penalty if I.C. reports that member contravened code. Swayze would have to present report first.
  147. MacKinnon withdraws motion. Guthrie asks record to reflect he was right.
  148. This is only topic #1 tonight, but Guthrie calls 10 minute break.
  149. Back to business. Guthrie thanks everyone for the break.
  150. Next: Corporate Services Committee: 2015 Preliminary Year End Operating Variance Report (Unaudited)
  151. Next: Corporate Services Committee: 2015 Preliminary Year End Operating Variance Report (Unaudited)
  152. Under this report is the negative variance for solid waste. $2.6 million.
  153. Gibson would like to make comment on operation budget variance. No surprise.
  154. Other two reports from Corporate Services Committee accepted 11-1. Billings voted against, Allt not in chamber.
  155. All Governance Committee items pulled for discussion.
  156. Infrastructure, Development and Enterprise Committee: Sign By-law Variances only item from that committee.
  157. Public Services Committee: Summer Games Update, Harvard Rd Transit, and W-G Drug Strategy.
  158. All Public Services Committee reports to be accepted by council. Passes 13-0
  159. That leaves variance report, priority project update, committee structure, and CEI on agenda.
  160. 2 delegates to speak on committee of the whole. Hugh Whitely up first.
  161. Whitely wants to read from a letter he received in 1992 from Chair of Planning committee, Linda Lemon.
  162. Substance of presentation is community engagement. That’s subject of report coming in June.
  163. Whitely says community engagement appears 36 times in tonight’s agenda, but not in committee of the whole item.
  164. Whitely points out 8 points of community engagement. Even i can;t type that fast.
  165. Billings ask when council lost that flexibility. Whiteley says it was when he pointed out that there was no public engagement on skate park.
  166. Allt says 5 min format reminds him on Animal Farm: “All animals are equal, but not quite equal.”
  167. Petric says Committee of the Whole is right step, but he;s concerned about the rush.
  168. Wants to get it right the first time. Decease in delegations, having determine what’s new info are concerns.
  169. Petric would like to see a little bit more discussion before final decision is made.
  170. Salisbury points out that its tough to get all delegates since some ppl work in the day, and others work in evening.
  171. A lot of cities have difficulty trying to balance, says Petric. Evenings makes more sense as Guelph is type of city where most have day jobs
  172. Allt wants to know how “new information” is defined.
  173. Clerk says chair, council, and Deputy CAO would all be involved in that determination.
  174. Gibson says there are some details he doesn’t like, such as not being able to delegate at a 2nd meeting. Are they approving the whole thing?
  175. Clerk: council is directing staff to start the process and come back with recommendations in June on delegations and other aspects.
  176. Quite an extensive report coming back based on direction from council says Stephen O’Brien.
  177. That was MacKinnon actually. (I’ve got learn people’s voices.)
  178. Hofland is also feeling like they’re rushing this process, has concerns.
  179. Hofland won’t be supporting the move. Feels like its a backwards move, loses something in delegate process.
  180. Hofland believes that we’re also looking at very long meetings, and cameras are rolling during the evening.
  181. Hofland believes that there are changes that can be made to current structure. Doesn’t want to change it up and make wrong call.
  182. O’Brien says report deals with way for urgent items to come before council in response to Billings’ question.
  183. Billings says she thinks this will pass b/c some councillors “loooooove” this idea. Also concerned about lengthy meetings.
  184. Billings says it’s much more comfortable for ppl new to the govt advocacy to come to committee and not full council
  185. Gordon asks if there will be public engagement as the process goes forward.
  186. O’Brien said they needed to bring direct recommendations to council. Budget issues had to streamline.
  187. Bell likes what Cllr Hofland said. Didn’t vote for current structure, felt restrictive. Would like to revisit standing bylaws.
  188. Salisbury not sure if he likes this idea either, but is there a plan B to identify ways visiting cllrs can participate in current structure.
  189. O’Brien says there are, and council can direct staff to explore it.
  190. Allt thinks he’s for it, but there is still cause for concern like efficiency. (i.e. long meetings)
  191. Allt says this could lead to a discussion about full-time councils.
  192. Good point @PhilAlltWard3. Committee of the Whole will put pressure to have full time Councillors.
  193. Allt says there are impediments on what visiting councillors can do. is there way to conserve elements of committee structure?
  194. Hofland: is there any reason council can’t send report for more information?
  195. 7-6 vote in favour. Tech snafu.
    Against: Hofland, Billings, Bel, Van Hellemond, Gibson, MacKinnon.
  196. Mwanzia points out that Guelph was a “first mover” in CEI, not being copied by many communities.
  197. 1) Important that targets are basis on decision making, says Mwanzia. 2) Also must be driven by the business community.
  198. Also needs metric based approach. In translation: we expect results.
  199. ,@adamadonaldson and I believe all 15 will be in support of the Community Energy Initiative.
  200. Allt asks Mwanzia what kind of message it sends to businesses if Guelph walks away from CEI?
  201. Mwanzia: A question of branding. Enviro becoming more competitive in terms of investment. But have to look at hard metrics too.
  202. We will see the business community operationalize GEERS says Mwanzia.
  203. “Brand position” and being a leading community in terms of energy management is an important “profile piece” for Guelph.
  204. Gibson says it’s important to recognize the brand, “a distinct advantage” to Guelph. Will qualitative metrics enhance us?
  205. Mwanzia: Yes. It’s good that we have jurisdiction catching up to us. Had CEI for 10 years, other towns just getting started.
  206. Main message, having an update on a central issue in the city is appropriate.
  207. Whiteley has one process-related comment: community engagement is not there to provide governance.
  208. Whiteley says GEERS isn’t an investment by the city, but the facilitation of private investment.
  209. Whiteley doesn’t think GEERS requires more serious investigation. Other cities doing it. Mobilizing capital.
  210. There is decision-based evidence says Whiteley to laughs.
  211. Whitely suggests that the initiative should be updated w/evidence-based decision making as objective.
  212. No Qs. Michael and Maria Finoro of Finterra Realty up next.
  213. MF Property Manages a lot of property in the city.
  214. Moved to HCBP, seized opportunity to be leader and trailblazer in doing their part for environment.
  215. All lights in condos being replaced with energy efficiency bulbs pay back in less than five years.
  216. Properties yielding huge savings in energy efficient changes and gov’t credits/grants.
  217. Biggest risk was going in with GMHI and District Energy. Number of positive factors lead to decision.
  218. Their neighbours believed in District Energy too. Independent engineers assured them of sustainability too.
  219. Invites anyone interested to come and look at equipment to see who District Energy works (well).
  220. Weren’t worried that District Energy would be dismantled. Not in #Guelph that’s energy leader.
  221. It;s “the height of egocentricity” to ignore the impact of global climate change on children says Finoro.
  222. Obviously, she’s encouraging council to update, move programs forward with transparency.
  223. Wants better reporting on regular basis, but take things other than the financial into account.
  224. #Guelph might also lose chance to take advantage of federal funds on clean energy.
  225. Local residents, business will get benefits says Ludwig.
  226. Ludwig says time would be wasted waiting for the whole thing to be “nailed down.”
  227. Need to “Stop debating what’s possible and do what’s necessary” Ludwig says.
  228. Gibson says there’s something in CEI for anyone. Wonders what everyone’s “common currency” in the plan: environment v. financial metrics.
  229. Ludwig wants feedback to know definitely what’s working and what’s not.
  230. Watson points out that last Wed. council passed the Baker St. plan w/o hard numbers.
  231. I wasn’t there for that one, just repeating what she said.
  232. Watson says there’s a short round of time to get read. Need to be at the front of the line to take advantage.
  233. Guelph not just competing in regional economy, but national and international one.
  234. Watson says CEI is one of the things that brought Canadian Solar to Guelph.
  235. Tells council that they need to be conscience when talking about Guelph’s accomplishments.
  236. Watson points out that this was a national award. Guelph beat 6K plus cities nationwide.
  237. Billings asks about QUEST. Was former-Mayor Farbridge on that board?
  238. “I’m pretty sure it is” says Mayor Guthrie.
  239. ,@adamadonaldson It was the Development Priorities Plan that Susan Watson referred to.
  240. Allt asks for elaboration on “net present value” vs CEI being a burden on tax payer.
  241. About being able to prioritize projects based on how attractive the returns are, says Knowles.
  242. @JasonDodgeWard3 @susan_t_carey You’re right. the concern comes from a 1-off comment, but that comment did come from the mayor.
  243. @JasonDodgeWard3 @susan_t_carey You’re right. the concern comes from a 1-off comment, but that comment did come from the mayor.
  244. Cynthia Bragg up now. Proud Guelphite, and proud of CEI.
  245. Bragg praising Germany’s dedication to clean energy in spite of her knowing its a country and not a city.
  246. Bragg hopes GEERS will go ahead to allow her to make her home more energy efficient. She’s 70, unwell, and looking to save more.
  247. Bragg would hate to see an “either or” situation between GEERS and sidewalk repair.
  248. “You timed that perfectly,” says Guthrie as Bragg ends right on the buzzer.
  249. “You may not believe in climate change, but we have to stay competitive” Darmon says.
  250. Darmon says that commitment to sustainability has contributed to low unemployment. “Why mess with success?
  251. Schreiner is speaking in favour of CEI. Encourages investment, job creation. continue to establish Guelph rep for climate solutions.
  252. Schreiner has 3 observations: 1) Numbers matter, need quantifiable results.
  253. 2) don’t forget the community in the “Community Energy Initiative.”
  254. No Qs for Schreiner. Next up is Maggie Laidlaw. Yes, that Maggie Laidlaw.
  255. Laidlaw considers herself an environmentalist. Who knew?
  256. Laidlaw points out that Guelph is a “champion city” for district energy according to the U.N. Yes, that U.N.
  257. Laidlaw says to delay now when we’re so far ahead, “Would be nothing less than insanity.”
  258. Over half the world lives in urban areas, which are responsible for 70% of emissions, says Laidlaw.
  259. Allt asks Laidlaw to email the UN report to council. It’s 180 pages.
  260. Mary-Kate Gilbertson of Anwaatin Inc, an Indigenous company battling climate change.
  261. Gilbertson: Guelph has rep for being environmental.
  262. Gilbertson: Ontario has caught up, ready to take advantage of low carbon econ. Guelph will have to take advantage of carbon taxes.
  263. There’s proof that there’s times Guelph has taken risks that paid off.
  264. Gilbertson says this would be like building the splash pad in Market Sq, then turning it into a parking lot.
  265. Ferrari humbled by the presenters tonight. Got all his points except one.
  266. “We intend on being there with bells on.” Ferrari says.
  267. That’s it for the delegations. Now council will discuss.
  268. Gibson asking staff about impact of $150K on additional money on budget.
  269. Peter Cartwright says $75 in base budget, asking council to approve applications to apply for other $75 from elsewhere.
  270. Downer now chairing. Guthrie has excused himself.
  271. Piper looking to amend, asking about typo under point 3, was it guidance or governance? Allt 2nds
  272. “guidance, oversight and reporting” the new wording.
  273. Back to the main motion. Billings wants to add another amendment tho.
  274. Billings: we’re going to be looking a qualitative and quantitative. Need to be aware of both.
  275. Scott Stewart says its embedded in there, but it could be made more explicit.
  276. Stewart says staff will be reporting back on a regular basis. Won’t be huge gaps in the reporting process.
  277. Plus, there’s new territory, so that they don’t want to commit to something too soon.
  278. Back to main motion. Bell talking about brand. City pursued over the years recycling program expansions, and wasn’t w/o a number of setbacks
  279. This is a similar pursuit, Bell says. Hopes we’re determined to take that leadership role.
  280. Bell says he’s totally bought in to continue brand expansion. It will come with understanding we’ll make mistakes & fix them.
  281. Bell follows up on Schreiner: numbers matter. Need metrics in order to establish brand.
  282. Bell worried that we’re on the light side of numbers & haven’t made best decision in past.
  283. Would like to see performance evaluation completed before going back to the public.
  284. Bell may want an amendment, but definitely wants metrics before community engagement.
  285. Guthrie says he’s pretty sure he remember from committee that one of the steps was going to be bringing back historical data.
  286. Cartwright says staff report does give list of activities that will come back to council in July.
  287. That helps Bell with sequencing. Thanks Guthire for pushing for CEI update.
  288. Gibson wants broad base of support for CEI update.
  289. Gibson says council is aware of the good will about green energy initiatives. Doesn’t want to lose public trust on that.
  290. “What we’ve inherited is a good brand” says Gibson.
  291. “What we’ve inherited is a good brand” says Gibson.
  292. Allt hopes it will be supported unanimously by all on council
  293. “There’s a movement that we can accept this,” says Gordon. “The credit is right out there.”
  294. “I took this gig for a different reason” than “partisan bickering” says Gordon.
  295. Gordon wants to honour the unanimity, and show that council can collaborate.
  296. Climate change isn’t going to wait for metrics, adds Gordon.
  297. Guthrie says he’s very excited about this. Wants to reposition the CEI properly.
  298. The vote on CEI update report: 13-0. Gallery applauses.
  299. Finally, the operating variance. The final item for tonight.
  300. Gibson thanks staff for handwork and the many positive variances we saw this year.
  301. Guthrie apologizes to staff. This was just supposed to be pulled for commentary, shouldn’t have made staff wait 4 hours.
  302. Guthrie asks council to go to chair of committee and indicate in advanced that they just want to comment.
  303. “Does anyone want to make up 10 questions?” jokes Guthrie.
  304. Billings asking about CFO job description. Incl. variance forecasting, whose responsible for taking forecast & making balanced budget.
  305. Pappert says treasurer and exec team look at mitigation. Ultimately its up to exec team and recommendations to council.
  306. My bad. One more thing: Priority Project Update.
  307. Billings asking Guthrie if the public is fully apprised of any potential losses for 2015 for CVA
  308. Billings: spent a lot of time talking about community engagement/transparency, wants to move holding report on District Energy Proposal…
  309. Pappert says the work is underway. Almost concluded. Be ready for late June/early July.
  310. Billings confused about what’s coming forward.
  311. Guthrie says the work is about sharing info with council, what they then do with that info is up to council.
  312. “I don’t know what’s coming forward.” says Billings.
  313. Guthrie says he doesn’t know what the strategies are either, it’s still in info gathering stage.
  314. Not sure if we’ve sorted that out, but it’s late…
  315. Guthrie calls vote on Priority Project Update, passes 13-0.
  316. But wait.. there’s still an issue about solid waste.
  317. Not on the agenda. Would have to have a suspension of procedural by-law. Guthrie says staff are on this issue & piloted something on wknd
  318. Guthrie says it should be left in staff;s hands and they’re doing good work on that. Could be added to May 9 agenda.
  319. Now motion to go back into closed session. Passes. That’s effectively the end of tonight’s meeting. Thanks for following along.


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