The life of a City Councillor is one of meetings — regular council meetings, committee meetings, society meetings and more.
Kimberley City Council is looking to perhaps cut down on a little time spent in meetings, but more importantly, to keep fully informed on what’s happening in both the Operations and Administration areas.
Councillors are appointed to either the Operations Committee or the Administration Committee, which meet bi-weekly. Many issues are discussed with staff at these meetings and then a recommendation on what action to take is sent to Council.
At the last regular council meeting, Coun. Don McCormick introduced a motion to replace the Admin and Ops meetings with one Committee of the Whole meeting attended by all Councillors.
“The thinking behind this is that we’ve had a number of issues we’ve had to deal with, important issues, and we are operating as half a Council,” McCormick said. “The issues come to Council but we are missing part of the dialogue and debate.
“I think it’s a good thing to try and see how it works.”
Mayor Ron McRae said he also thought it was a good idea.
“I see it as streamlining,” he said, noting it had been tried before in his previous administration.
“We did try Committee of the Whole before,” said Coun. Jack Ratcliffe. “It didn’t work. It dragged out too long.”
Coun. Albert Hoglund said it takes up a whole day of staff time.
“I don’t think it’s going to work. Any council member can go to either Ops or Admin meetings, and there is still time to get information from staff before the next regular meeting.”
McCormick argued that Councillors are charged with being open to persuasive argument and that means being fully informed.
“It failed before but this is a different group and different times. There’s no reason not to try.”
Council voted to give it a try with Ratcliffe and Hoglund opposing.