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City Council – Monday, April 11, 2022, 7pm

Updated: Jan 5

Items from the most recent Planning Committee and General Committee reports. Plus an unclear and confusingly-worded direct motion about Council members on leave of absence – which makes one question if it is targeting the Mayor now on leave to campaign for MPP?

Circulation List:|&Search= (note that our Statement – Stopping Sexual Violence In the Workplace – is STILL not included in the Circulation List, as had been submitted and requested March 28)

ON LEAVE: Lehman

Councillors Aylwin & Morales and the Clerk were attending via Zoom – unfortunately, they only appeared on screen when speaking, so we are not 100% certain of their votes, just going by "best guess" from Deputy Mayor Ward's wording.

📜📜 Confirmation of the Minutes

📝🏘 Planning Committee Report

🗣🏭 Public Meeting – 315 & 232 Mapleview Drive West (Ward 7)

🗣🏘 Public Meeting – 505, 511, 515 & 533 Yonge Street (Ward 8)

📝📄 General Committee Report

Section A

  • Carried – we believe unanimously

🎤🪕 2022 Busking Program Pilot and Emerging Artists / Musicians Program

  • Staff Report:

  • Execute a Memorandum of Understanding with Canadian Musicians Cooperative, Inc. (CMCI) for delivery of the Emerging Musicians Program as a music industry incubator for 2022 and for subsequent years

  • Pursue a one-year pilot busking program – artists that are ineligible for the Emerging Artists / Musicians Program can apply for a Busking Permit to perform at a designated spot in downtown Barrie

⛔️🌳 Gate at Tyndale Park

  • Direct Development Services Department to Investigate the cost of installing and operating an automated gate at Tyndale Park to limit vehicular access into the park in the later evening hours

🐟🎣 Lake Simcoe

  • Support federal funding for a Lake Simcoe Restoration Fund, that represents a significant percentage of the overall Freshwater Action Plan Fund, with funding in excess of previous commitments, beginning in the 2022 budget

  • Ask that this funding be used for:

  • Shoreline mitigation, stream restoration and stormwater quality management, including the tributaries of Sophia Creek, Kidd's Creek, Bunkers Creek, Dyments Creek, Hotchkiss Creek, Whiskey Creek, Lovers Creek and Hewitts Creek

  • Projects to ameliorate contaminated sites in the watersheds

  • Upgrades to help retrofit municipal infrastructure such as wastewater treatment and stormwater management facilities to decrease total discharges

  • Planting 250,000 trees in the watershed

  • Purchasing and conservation of more forests and wetlands under the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority

  • Send this resolution and a letter from the Mayor to the federal Minister of Finance, Minister of the Environment & Climate Change, President of the Treasury Board, local MPs, all Lake Simcoe region municipalities and the LSRCA

🙅‍♀️🦹‍♂️ Stopping Harassment and Abuse by Local Leaders Act

  • Endorse the "Stopping Harassment and Abuse by Local Leaders Act" that would create a process for municipal Councils to remove Councillors who violate workplace violence and harassment policies.

  • Send a letter of support to local MPPs, MPP Stephen Blais, the Premier, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and the Association of Municipalities of Ontario

Section B

  • Received – we believe unanimously (although Morales had asked for this to be a separate report last week, so he may have voted against)

🏠🏢 Establishing a Renters' Committee

  • MOTION LOST: Direct Legislative and Court Services Department to include the establishment of a Renters' Committee to be considered by the 2022-26 Council as part of its Council Committee appointments, to bring forward issues of renters – including rental rates and regulations associated with rental units

  • Because the motion was lost, there was no further direction to staff.

Section C

  • Received (AGAINST: McCann – others were unanimous to receive, we believe)

💸🦹 Potential Purchase of Barrie Jail

  • MOTION LOST: Investigate the feasibility of purchasing the Barrie Jail for the purposes of preservation and affordable housing with the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services and/or Infrastructure Ontario

  • Because the motion was lost, there was no further direction to staff.

📝📄 General Committee Report

  • Report from April 11: (not yet available – taking place 2 hours before City Council)

Section A

  • Carried – we believe unanimously

💰🏙 Community Revitalization Fund Application – Downtown Barrie BIA

  • We are unsure at this time if there were any amendments – will correct when minutes are finalized

  • Support in principle the BIA's application to the Community Revitalization Fund for a permanent road closure infrastructure project to facilitate the Open Air Dunlop programming

  • Earmark funds to match the BIA's financial commitment of $35,135, from the Reinvestment Reserve, subject to Infrastructure Department in consultation with other City departments:

  • complete a technical and operational assessment of the proposal and associated scope of work, to ensure it considers all of the elements, including additional budgetary requirements and operational considerations associated with installing permanent infrastructure on a municipal right-of-way

  • work with the BIA to review appropriate design concepts, project timing, project management, and procurement for the project

  • Economic and Creative Development Department, in consultation with other City departments, report back to General Committee on feasibility, additional costs to the City for the project and implementation, prior to the release of any matching project funds

Section B

  • Carried – we believe unanimously

🤫🧑‍💼 2022 CUPE Negotiations

  • Confidential Labour Relations / Employee Negotiations Matter

  • Staff Report

Section C

  • Carried – we believe unanimously, although Deputy Mayor Ward was specifically reminded to ask for those opposed for this vote, so perhaps one of the Zoom attendees opposed?

🤫🧑‍💼 Staff Performance

  • Confidential Personal Information Matter – Staff Position Review

  • Sponsor: Harvey

👋💻 Leaves of Absence of Members of Council

  • FULL DISCLOSURE: We had a number of concerns about both this motion and the way in which it was brought forward. It was poorly thought out and badly worded, undermined the existing policies and the proper processes for updating them, and appeared to be highly partisan and personally targeted in intent. Usually we don't record all the back-and-forth of debates, but we believe some very important points were raised in the discussion, many of which addressed our own concerns.

  • Direct Motion: Harvey / N.Harris

  • If a member of Council is on an unpaid leave of absence, they must return all City-owned electronic devices within 48 hours, have their email and building access card suspended, and be relieved from all City duties and responsibilities

    • If they fail to comply, the CAO or Clerk must notify Council as soon as possible via email

    • Any member currently on unpaid leave has 48 hours to comply

  • While on unpaid leave, members continue to be bound by the City Council and Committee Member Code of Conduct

  • (Honestly, the wording of this section doesn't make sense – this is our best guess at the intention:) Update the City's Mobile Device Policy to include staff away from their positions on unpaid leave or away for a period in excess of 90 days. The policy of returning devices also pertains to members of Council who don't get re-elected. The CAO will advise Council once this policy has been updated.

  • Councillor Kungl pointed out that if there is already a Policy in place to deal with this, the usual procedure is that staff would bring it forward with suggestions for needed changes, especially if there had been a breach of confidentiality, device misuse or other issue that might require policy amendments. CAO Prowse confirmed there had been no recent issues, and that the process is generally that staff bring necessary policy & procedure changes to Council, and not vice versa. He also indicated that in current leaves, management has discretion and flexibility to address these issues on a case-by-case basis, and this direct motion would remove that. Kungl expressed concern with item #4, about being relieved from all City duties and responsibilities – and stated that while on leave, Councillors are not excused from the responsibilities of Council, and are still governed by the Integrity Commission and Code. Kungl noted as precedent there have been both paid and unpaid leaves in this Council, no technology was required to be returned, and no issues arose. She also noted the provisions of the Municipal Act, and expressed concern that this motion as worded wouldn't work in alignment with the Municipal Act.

  • Councillor Aylwin asked if the practise of returning technology was put in place when Councillor Shipley was on an unpaid leave to run in an election – City Clerk Cooke stated he was able to keep the equipment for the duration of his absence, and returned it when he resigned from Council. Aylwin asked about practises of returning technology on unpaid leave for Councillors in other municipalities – Cooke indicated there were none, but that it was considered best practice for a Councillor to take a leave of absence when running for another office, and only return technology upon resignation. Aylwin asked about Councillors on leave and whether they were bound by the Code of Conduct – Cooke confirmed that they were bound by the Code whether acting or on leave, as also confirmed by the Integrity Commissioner. Aylwin asked if the Mayor not being able to communicate with the Deputy Mayor, or having access to previous correspondence to share with the Deputy, would be problematic for continuity – Deputy Mayor Ward confirmed it would be better to be able to ask questions and refer to previous correspondence around City issues, as had been the case when Councillor Shipley had taken leave previously. Aylwin believed the motion to be partisan, and didn't like the way it had come about.

  • Councillor Riepma asked about the existing I.T. policy, and confirmed whether it was applicable to staff as well as Councillors? Head of I.T., Mr. Nolan, confirmed the policy covered all staff, Council and committees. Riepma asked how the proposed motion covered what was already in the current policy – reiterated that staff usually make recommendations for necessary policy amendments, and not the other way. Wondered if what was being proposed was appropriate or comprehensive enough? CAO Prowse repeated that staff's approach was based on flexibility and discretion, and this proposed policy would limit their ability to continue in this way. Riepma repeated that the current policy hadn't been shown to be a problem, and his comfort that staff would come forward with changes if there was anything lacking.

  • Councillor McCann spoke in favour, stating "with recent newspaper articles that information has, you know, came from this office to there, I think tightening up the procedures is probably a good thing." (This was a highly disturbing statement – appearing to be supporting this policy in order to silence a particular staff member currently on leave due to the recent Workplace Harassment case.) Councillor Kungl called for a point of order.

  • Councillor N.Harris spoke in favour of the motion, asked what was written in the City's policy – City Clerk Cooke again confirmed that the Code of Conduct applies to members of Council whether actively working or on leave. N.Harris continued to defend the motion, did not seem aware of current policies already covering these issues, and criticizing the current policies as "lax".

  • Councillor Morales asked about possibility of controlling only outbound emails, as a potential solution to any communications concerns. Mr. Nolan explained that it might be technically possible, but doing so could create some messy communication situations, so not a good solution.

  • Councillor Thomson asked for a list of who had gone on leave in the last 2 terms – Cooke noted Brassard, Shipley, Prowse, and N.Harris. Thomson asked if any of them were asked to return electronic devices – Cooke confirmed none had been asked. Thomson asked what the number one reason for leave would be – Prowse did not have the data, but suspected it was maternity leave. Thomson indicated that was problematic, and could be discriminatory. He asked if there was any business that could require Mayor Lehman to return if needed – Cooke confirmed that there was always the potential. He and Cooke are signing authorities for the Corporation, he would have to be called back in to sign. Also, there may be inquiries coming in to the Mayor specifically, and would deal with information known only to him – he needs to be able to respond. Thomson stated he would not support, as he preferred a consistent approach.

  • Councillor J.Harris was about to speak, but Councillor Harvey interrupted to say he would withdraw the motion, due to "new information". Councillor N.Harris (who had seconded the motion) agreed to withdraw.


📜📜 Bylaws

Bill 026 – Street Naming, Lakeshore Drive

Bill 027 – Zoning Bylaw Amendment, 620 Lockhart Road (Ward 9)

Bill 028 – Part Lot Control – Sean Homes (Athabaska) Inc, 829 Essa Road

Bill 029 – Parking Restrictions – Tomlin Court

Bill 030 – Confirmation Bylaw



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