GUELPH POLITICAST #47 – Stephen O’Brien, City Clerk

The subtitle for this week’s episode might well be “How does city council work?” Or at least, how does something transform from being an idea or suggestion into a new by-law or policy. Change is always inevitable, and there’s a fairly significant change coming to the way council is conducted next month, the switch over from a standing committee model to a Committee-of-the-Whole one. So I thought, “Why not combine the ideas?”

On this week’s Guelph Politicast, Stephen O’Brien, the city clerk of the City of Guelph, takes us though the process of how Committee-of-the-Whole went from something staff considered as a way to streamline how city council does business to becoming the actual way that city council will do business in just a few weeks. What are the steps between idea, committee, and council decision? What kind of research is involved? And when does a new idea get feedback and from who?

All good questions that O’Brien helped me figure out, and in addition that to insight into just how the sausage gets made (so to speak), this podcast will also let you know how Committee-of-the-Whole will be different, what changes you might expect when it’s enacted, and how council and staff will determine if the whole of the Whole is working out for the best. If you love the minutiae of municipal politics, you will definitely want to grab a cup of tea and enjoy this in a place where you can lay back, relax and let yourself drift away to a beautiful space where policy and procedure is its own reward. (Hopefully, I didn’t oversell that.)

Reminder: the first meeting of the Committee-of-the-Whole is on Tuesday September 6, and you can reach the clerk’s office at 519-837-5603 or clerks@guelph.ca. You can also follow the City of Guelph’s Twitter feed @cityofguelph to keep up to date with future meeting developments.

The theme music for the Guelph Politicast is from the KPM Klassics collection by Syd Dale.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here.

Remember that the Politicast Podbean channel is also the host for podcast versions of Open Sources Guelph. The previous Thursday’s episode of Open Sources will be posted on Mondays.

Stay tuned for future editions of the Guelph Politicast!

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