The Council Meeting was dominated by the Committee of the Whole as it waded through various issues. Below are some highlights from the Committee of the Whole discussions.
OVRT – Alameda
Council endorsed a County inspired proposal to create an Alameda along the OVRT on the portion of the OVRT that runs through Almonte from Church St to Bridge St. An Alameda is defined as a shaded tree lined path and the proposal provides for the planting of approximately 90 trees.
Some Councilors feel that additional improvements are required to further enhance this area and so there will be more discussion on this matter.
Finance and Adminstration
Following lengthy debate it was agreed that the Finance and Policy Advisory Committee chaired by Mr. Ed Wilson a resident of Ramsay Ward and an Executive Member of PRATAC will participate in the development of the 2020 municipal budget. The 2020 budget will be developed during the September through October period with final Council approval planned for the end of December.
The 2020 municipal budget will play a key role in the implementation of the municipality’s future plans especially in view of impending municipal funding cutbacks recently announced by the Ford Government. Our municipal government may see fit to fill the financial voids created by these cutbacks with excessive tax increases.
PRATAC members are urged to impress upon our municipal government the need to maintain minimal tax increases.
The Procedural By-Law is an important document as it governs the way in which Council conducts business on behalf of the residents of Mississippi Mills.
Below are highlights of some of the procedural issues voted on during Tuesday’s Council Meeting:
Open Forum: Municipal Staff will develop appropriate guidelines to permit residents of Mississippi Mills to address Council during regular Council Meetings.
Mayor’s Standing on Committee Memberships: The Mayor will remain as an “ex-officio” member of all advisory committees which means that the Mayor can participate in all committee meetings. However the Mayor will not be able to vote on issues being addressed by the committees.
Expulsion of Residents from Council and or Municipal Property: Town staff has been instructed to seek input from the Town’s solicitor on drafting rules for banning unruly residents from Council Chambers and other Town owned facilities.
Recording of Council Proceedings: Audio recording of future Council meetings will be permitted as soon as the Town has developed its own system of audio recording and archiving of Council proceedings.
Live Streaming: Council wishes to proceed with the live steaming of Council proceedings. Town staff will begin working on a plan to implement this practice and report back to Council.
Length of Council Meetings: Future Council meetings will be limited to 4 hours.