Fewer committee meeting questioned
Matthew Pearson, Ottawa Citizen
City politicians got right down to business Wednesday by debating, amending and ultimately approving the governance review. Much of what the report contained could safely be considered inside baseball, but several changes are worth noting, Matthew Pearson
The report recommended that the transit commission and both the community and protective services (CPS) and environment committees hold eight meetings a year, on the understanding that special meetings can be called when necessary (transit held an average of 15 meetings a year between 2010 and 2014; CPS held 10 and environment nine, respectively).
But this proposed change didn’t sit well with Gloucester- Southgate Coun. Diane Deans, who has previously chaired both transit and CPS, and rookie Somerset Coun. Catherine McKenney.
They moved that this recommendation be referred to the first meetings of each of these committees/commission in order to receive feedback from the public before coming back to council with a final recommendation about the number of meetings each will hold in a given year.
NEW DISCLOSURE RULES FOR GIFTS
Since the gift registry for councillors was established, the threshold for disclosing all gifts, benefits and hospitality from one source in a calendar year was $30. Staff recommended in the report that this amount should increase to $150 (the disclosure threshold for receiving tickets to concerts and sporting events will remain $30).
Seeking a middle ground, rookie Rideau-Rockcliffe Coun. Tobi Nussbaum proposed that council set the amount at $100.
That passed on a vote of 15-9.