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Councillors seek public opinion on council size and wards

County councillors are hosting Town Hall meetings to obtain public feedback on proposed council size and electoral wards.

Councillors Jim Dunlop, Barry Turpin, Heather Campbell and Bev Campbell are hosting two meetings – Tuesday, Oct. 1 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Wellington Town Hall and Wednesday, Oct. 2 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Picton Town Hall (above the Fire Hall). Barb Proctor will host at the Milford Town Hall Thursday, Oct 3rd, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Councillors Robert Quaiff, Dianne O’Brien, Janice Maynard, Nick Nowitski and Alec Lunn hosted meetings last week.

County Council had been struggling with the question of council size for more than 15 years and turned to the assembly model to help it answer the question: What is the appropriate size for the municipal council?

Led by Dr. Johnathan Rose, the Prince Edward County Citizens’ Assembly recommended that the number of municipal councillors be reduced to 10 from 15, plus the mayor. The recommendation, along with the rationale that brought the assembly to the decision was presented at a committee of the whole meeting Sept. 19.

The committee of the whole passed three motions to be considered for adoption at a special council meeting at Shire Hall, Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. The motions propose that council size be reduced to 10 councillors plus a mayor; that the five new wards with two councillors per ward be established for electoral purposes only (re the 5b option map below); and that the 10 pre-amalgamation wards be retained for all other purposes, and be recognized with signage.

In Mayor Mertens’ report, he explained that in 2008, a Composition of Council Committee was established and provided a report to council with various options on electoral boundaries and council representation. The report contained various electoral boundary options for a council comprised of 10 councillors and a mayor. Those included a two Electoral Ward System, five Electoral Ward System, and an Election at Large option with no electoral boundaries.

The Citizens’ Assembly as well recommended a two Ward or five Ward System, however did not recommend the Election at Large option.

DATES TO NOTE:

Oct. 9: Council special public meeting at 7 p.m. at Shire Hall.

Oct. 22: Council to pass a bylaw to enact new ward boundaries for the 2014 Election (45-day appeal period would commence
on Oct. 22 and end on Dec. 6).
Prior to Nov. 6: Municipality gives notice of the passing of the bylaw to the public specifying the last date for filing a notice of appeal.

Dec. 6: Last day for notice(s) of appeal to be received.

Prior to December 20, 2013
Notice(s) of appeal to be forward to the Municipal Board.
A bylaw to enact new ward  boundaries for the 2014 Election By-law must be in force and the 45-day appeal period must have lapsed with no appeals to be able to implement changes for the 2014 election. Therefore, the bylaw must be adopted by October 22, 2013. If the bylaw is appealed, the Ontario Municipal Board issues an order to affirm or amend the by-law.

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  1. Paul says:

    LOL I was just thinking does the old adage apply here “Its not the size that’s counts but how you use it” I know I’m a smart rear end…

  2. SandraMc says:

    Where and when is Sophiasburgh holding a public meeting on these issues? Looks like it is not happening? Please let me know.

    >>>> County councillors are hosting Town Hall meetings to obtain public feedback on proposed council size and electoral wards.

    Councillors Jim Dunlop, Barry Turpin, Heather Campbell and Bev Campbell are hosting two meetings – Tuesday, Oct. 1 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Wellington Town Hall and Wednesday, Oct. 2 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Picton Town Hall (above the Fire Hall). Barb Proctor will host at the Milford Town Hall Thursday, Oct 3rd, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

    Councillors Robert Quaiff, Dianne O’Brien, Janice Maynard, Nick Nowitski and Alec Lunn hosted meetings last week.>>>>

    SandraMc

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