Chestermere City Council passed a number of amendments as recommended by administration to the procedural bylaw that governs the preparation and running of council meetings at the June 18 meeting of council.
“We asked them to do a complete review of the procedural bylaw,” said Chestermere’s Mayor Marshall Chalmers.
One significant change that Chalmers said goes to council’s commitment to open and transparent communication with residents is that the city will begin live streaming video from council meetings on the city website this August.
“This is just another step in being engaged in the community making sure the community has the opportunity if they can’t make it down to city hall they can watch us on the live stream,” said Chalmers.
While there will be no option available to participate in the two council question periods remotely, Chalmers did say that anyone with questions on what they see in council on the video feed can give himself or any member of council a call to ask their questions.
Once the video feed is set up, it will bring Chestermere up to speed with other municipalities that already run a live feed of their council meetings.
“It’s absolutely a great tool…and lots of communities are doing it, we’re just kind of behind and we’re catching up,” he said, “I’m excited that we’re going to be able to provide that to the community.”
In the review, administration recommended a number of other changes that were passed by council.
“If you’re going to make one change you may as well address the whole procedural bylaw,” said Chalmers.
Other notable changes include public hearings will now be included in the regular council meeting agendas and minutes, submissions to meeting agendas are due two Wednesdays prior to the meeting, minutes will now be recorded at Committee of the Whole meetings, Councilors will now have to inform the Mayor of any absences from council meetings.
Council will also be able to exclude a councilor from a meeting as a consequence of improper behaviour.
City administration came up with these amendments to the bylaw after researching what the best practices were among the Chestermere’s comparator municipalities.