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Question of council size back to public for input

The question of the size of the municipality’s council is again on the table for public input.

The public is invited to submit proposals on potential changes to the number of councillors or electoral-ward boundaries.

The County’s Committee of the Whole chose not to endorse a lengthy report by Mayor Robert Quaiff in April and decided to hold another meeting to explore various options.

Quaiff had recommended a system similar to one used by the school board for electing trustees leaving the County’s 10 historic wards intact.  His proposal and background here: http://www.countylive.ca/?p=52186

Four proposals have been brought forward to date from both members of council and the public, which include:

• electoral districts being north and south;

• the N.E.W. plan (www.bit.do/new-plan);
http://www.countylive.ca/?p=52059

• Plan 13 – (eliminating two councillors by combining Hallowell and Bloomfield as well as one from Sophiasburgh);

• current council size and current electoral wards.

In 2013, a Citizen’s Assembly recommended reducing council to 10 councillors and a mayor. That recommendation was voted against by the former council.

“We are encouraging members of the public to participate in the review of the size of council,” said Mayor Robert Quaiff. “As any changes made to the number of councillors and our electoral ward boundaries will impact our residents, we welcome any ideas they wish to bring forward that could help inform the review process.”

Additional proposals will join the four proposals for consideration by council at a special committee of the whole meeting, to be held June 25 at 6 p.m. at Shire Hall.

To be qualified for consideration, proposals must include the proposed number of councillors for each new electoral ward, and a description of each new electoral ward by referencing current or parts of current ward boundaries (eg: new electoral ward 1, comprised of current Picton ward and a portion of current Hallowell ward).

Proposals will also be scored based on consideration of representation by population, voter parity (do all electors cast the same number of votes regardless of the ward in which they reside) and the utilization of natural and physical boundaries.

Proposals must be received by Kim White, Clerk at 332 Picton Main Street, Picton Ontario, K0K 2T0, by email at kwhite@pecounty.on.ca or by fax at 613-476-5727 no later than June 4, 2015.

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  1. Mark says:

    I like the at large system as well. I believe everyone’s vote should carry the same weight. They all make critical decisions that affect everyone outside of their current ward. Given that, I want to vote for the same number of reps as any other voter. Equal representation. Some will say it’s too big an area, hogwash! Why they think there is a need to define little pieces of turf is not progressive. This option needs to get on the table and the pre cursor of identifying electoral boundaries needs to be removed as a selection criteria.

  2. Wolf Braun says:

    I like Susan’s suggestion. In fact, I’d be happy with 6 plus a Mayor. No boundaries. We get to vote a full 9 or 7 from the candidates running. Importantly, those elected must adhere to a common Purpose and set of Principles approved by citizens.

  3. Argyle says:

    Since when have any of the County’s recent councils done the smart thing. To many of our elected reps seem to have their own agenda’s,after all downsizing council was a mandate from the last 2 elections. Time to address the issues you were elected to deal with.

  4. Wolf Braun says:

    I’m betting that there might just be “one more” request for ideas after this council ‘butchers’ ideas submitted from the current request. Democracy is not what Councilors do. Democracy is what people do. 🙁

  5. Susan says:

    So simple. One electoral ward called Prince Edward County! 8 Councilors and one Mayor elected at large. Every residents vote carries the same weight.

  6. Doris Lane says:

    Just forget about the council size stuff and go with the North South way the major proposed enough of the nonsense
    Taxes time again and I hate to pay my taxes for nothing
    I get no benefits from living in the County–so wish I had never returned.
    We should just let OMB step in and solve the problem

  7. JKB says:

    This again…How much money will council spend this time to get the same response from the tax payers that they have received so many times in the past….I really do believe that council is just trying to tick the public off…I hear more and more often that voters are not even interested in voting in an election, why waste our time nothing gets done…If the older residents quit voting and the younger ones don’t become more interested in voting….why even have an election…just let the old boys club run the county as they do now..

    One month they renew the CEO’s contract two months later they let him go…again a big cost to the tax payers…who in the work force gets to vote to give themselves a raise… they say there is not enough money in the budget to fix our terrible roads at one meeting ,the next meeting they vote in favour of a splash pad..Is it necessary to make everything so difficult, I don’t think it is rocket science, or do the members of county council feel better if they spend hours and dollars trying to make it rocket science…I am so disappointed with politics and our politicians at all levels..God help our county and our Country

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