The Municipal Act, 2001 provides that the Township must establish a Council Code of Conduct which outlines ethical standards of behaviour for Members of Council. The Act also provides that a municipality may appoint an Integrity Commissioner who, among other duties, may investigate potential breaches of the Code and recommend penalties to Council where he or she has found the Member of Council to have contravened the Code.
Tony Fleming of Cunningham, Swan, Carty, Little & Bonham LLP was appointed as the Integrity Commissioner for the Township of North Dundas. Contact them at 613-544-0211 or visit them online at www.cswan.com.
Bylaw 2019-07 – To Appoint an Integrity Commissioner
Bylaw 2018-32 – Code of Conduct for Council Members
Municipal councils, local boards and their committees meet behind closed doors on occasion to deal with some matters. For example, if a municipality is being sued or if Council is considering purchasing a piece of land or if Council must deal with a labour relations issue then it is appropriate that it be able to do so at a closed meeting. The purpose of such a closed meeting is to receive information or give direction.
Local government in Ontario must be transparent and accountable. To this end, the Province has set the rules for a council, local board or a committee to go into a closed meeting. These rules are found in section 239 of the Municipal Act 2001. They must be strictly followed.
See a full list of the permitted reasons for going into a closed meeting.
If a member of the public has a complaint about a meeting or portion of a meeting being closed, and are unable to relieve their concerns by speaking with a member of council, that person is asked to review the process for a closed meeting investigation, and if necessary, fill out the closed meeting investigation request form.
These complaints are investigated by the Municipal Investigator, who at this time is Local Authority Services (LAS) and their delegated investigator Aird and Berlis LLP. Please see the following by-law, for the purposes of providing for closed meeting investigation services Bylaw 2021-08 – Closed Meeting Investigator Services and Closed Meeting Investigator FAQ for more information.
All complaints must contain:
- Name of municipality
- Requestor’s name, mailing address, telephone number and e-mail address (if applicable)
- Date of closed meeting under consideration
- Nature and background of the particular occurrence
- Any activities undertaken (if any) to resolve the concern
- Any other relevant information
- Direction with respect to release of identity
- Original signature
Complaints should be submitted directly to the Clerk in a sealed envelope clearly identified as a complaint under Section 239 of the Municipal Act (closed meeting investigation). A cheque for $125.00 payable to the Township of North Dundas (refundable should the application be denied) shall accompany this application. The Clerk shall take all measures to ensure that the envelope remains sealed and its contents remain confidential and immediately forward it to the Municipal Investigator.
The investigator will assign a file number and record the date and time the envelope was received. The investigator will only investigate complaints received on the Complaint Form, duly signed and accompanied by the prescribed fee.