August 17, 2018
By M. Haddad
Reeve McMorris opened the meeting with a clear message. Let’s get down to business. This Council will be clear, decisive and transparent going forward. The first order of business was the addition of two motions: one to rescind the contract of the current CAO and the second to appoint an Interim CAO, bringing back Raymond Moreau, retired former CAO. Both were passed unanimously. Mr. Moreau took his position at the table and the meeting moved forward. Second addition was to “Other Business”, where Mike Bartmanovich requested change to the Organization Procedures By-law.
The Interim CAO explained how this would be accomplished. By-law 1566 had been repealed when By-law 1572 was adopted during the last days of the previous council. As the intent of this motion is to return to the earlier organizational format, with some changes, a new By-law will be drafted, and it will go through the process of 3 readings. The focus of this is to bring back the Committee structure whereby Councillors will each take on responsibility for various tasks of the RM. Secondly, the Agenda format, as well as meeting times and locations, will change. The motion passed.
Committee assignments already delegated include:
Deputy Reeve: Graham Randle
Public Works: Graham Randle & Mike Barkmanovich; Finance & Human Resources: Irwin Kumka & Steve Axworthy; Police Board: Steve Axworthy; Library Board: Irwin Kumka; Communications: Steve Axworthy & Mike Barkmanovich; Winnipeg River Community Futures: Graham Randle.
Decisions were made based on a commitment to voters to be more accessible and transparent. Meeting times will move to 7:00 p.m., and alternate evenly between being in Winnipeg and at Victoria Beach. Format changes also include moving the “in camera” portion of a meeting to the beginning, with the public portion to start immediately following. Questions will not be allowed during the meeting, but after the formal meeting, discussion or questions will be accepted if pertinent to information covered at the meeting. Other issues/questions are to be submitted in writing in advance. This will enable Council to research the information and have a better response prepared at the next meeting. Delegations must also be registered in advance.
The only delegation registered to present at this meeting was the developer of a section of property in Albert Beach that had been in the works for more than 8 years. The only detail left before signing the development plan agreement was to provide a drawing of the easement needed to allow an extension to the dike to be constructed along one side. The urgency now is due to the time-frame attached to funding for the completion of a dike. Council committed to a two-week time frame to get the necessary drawings, permits etc. During question period a resident, affected by the drainage of flood or rain water in the Albert Beach area, expressed concern if this development would add to past problems. Both proper drainage and local well access arrangements for potable water will be part of the Development Agreement. The new area will be named Paradise Sands at Albert Beach.
Councillor Axworthy spoke about his commitment to improving communication in all areas. He expressed concern over how to communicate warnings during emergency situations, as well as providing an interactive format between Council and taxpayers.
The meeting concluded with a discussion of how garbage and recycling are being handled on an interim basis, and on a lighter note, ideas were presented by Jo-Anne Gibson on how the RM and Council can take part in the celebration of the RM’s 100th Anniversary.