City Council Preview – What’s on the Agenda for the April 24 Meeting?

On this month’s council meeting agenda, there’s the integrity commissioner’s report, nominations for the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and… Oh, who are we kidding?! The online voting debate is the one we’re all going to watching…

CLOSED MEETING – C-CON-2017.7 ATU Collective Bargaining Mandate Request.

CON-2017.11 Habitat for Humanity Development Charge Late Payment Agreement – Habitat has asked for a deferral of development charges for a new project it’s building at 11 Cityview Dr. Construction on the 30-unit townhouse complex begins later this spring, and will unfold over three phases with DCs due at the end of each phase. So in order to avoid having to raise extra funds in the short-term, they’re asking to defer the payment of the development charges until the construction of phase three is complete. Given the rather minor financial implications, and the fact that Habitat for Humanity is doing their part to raise the City’s available stock of affordable housing, planning staff will allow the deferral.

CON-2017.12 Nomination of a City of Guelph Representative to Apply for a Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) Board of Director Position – City Council is being asked to endorse one of its members to stand for nomination to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities for its next one-year term starting in July 2017. The board consists of 75 members from across Canada, and has included members of Guelph city council in the past. The requirements on the part of the successful nominee will be to attend quarterly board meetings and the Annual Conference in Halifax in June 2018.

CON-2017.14 Annual Report from the Integrity Commissioner – Robert J. Swayze will present his annual report on the duties of Integrity Commissioner. In the last year, he conferred with half-a-dozen councillors on “confidential matters” and worked with the City Clerk’s office on changes to the Council Code of Conduct under Bill 68 – Modernizing Ontario’s Municipal Legislation Act, 2016. The legislation has only received second reading at Queen’s Park, so there’s nothing to report on how this will affect Guelph at the moment. There was only one complaint to Swayze in the last year, and it concerned the affair in January 2016 when five members of council left a meeting to deny quorum, which Swayze dismissed as “a political tactic.” Swayze will also stand now as the City’s Integrity Commissioner for another one year term.

COW-CS-2017.04 2018 Municipal Election: Methods of Voting – Obviously, this is the matter that all eyes will be on at the council meeting. At Committee-of-the-Whole earlier this month, in a vote of 7 to 5, council voted to not make online voting an option in the 2018 municipal election, which immediately turned this into a political hot potato. Council will decide if internet voting is well and truly off the table for 2018 at this meeting, and the vast majority of people seem to be hoping that council will change its collective mind. Former Wellington-Halton Hills NDP candidate Anne Gajerski-Cauley will be delegating, and so far nearly 200 correspondences have been received on the matter. What’s the tally? For everyone one person that’s against, there’s eight people for…

CON-2017.15 Exploring Pathways for Aligning Guelph’s Corporate Assets with the Low Carbon Economy – Ward 1 Councillor Dan Gibson is looking to shake-up Guelph’s environmental creds by having the City look at aligning corporate assets with the low carbon economy. The recommendations include having city staff work with the Climate Change Office to look at ways to transition to a net zero designation, to look at fleet procurement and ways to electrify the City’s fleet of vehicles, and to have staff report back by the fourth quarter of 2017.

CON-2017.16 Notice of Motion Policy – A Notice of Motion about Notices of Motion, delicious. Ward 6 Councillor Karl Wettstein is submitting that staff bring forward a firm policy about the use of Notice of Motion and that it’s use be suspended until then because it feels like some members of council are using it for political ends.

Reports from Committee-of-the-Whole on April 3:
COW-PS-2017.02 Outstanding Resolutions of Public Services
COW-PS-2017.03 Animal Control By-law Chicken Amendments
COW-CS-2017.02 Tax Ratios 2017-2020 Assessment Cycle
COW-CS-2017.03 2017 Tax Policy
COW-2017.01 Councillors Mike Salisbury and Leanne Piper Request for Access to Additional Training Funding 2017
CON-2017.9 Surplus Asset Sales Policies – Mayor Guthrie’s Motion for which notice was given on March 6, 2017

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