Governance: Transparency and Openness

All meetings of Council and its committees are open to the public but open meetings don't automatically equate to transparency or openness. Residents shouldn't have to attend every meeting to know what is going on. And, if they do attend, they shouldn't be forced into silence.

My position on open government includes the following:
  • We should know how the Mayor and Councillors vote on every issue. Currently, a "recorded vote" happens only when a member of Council asks for it. For most decisions, we have no idea who voted for or against. I will ask for all votes of Council and any committee that includes all 11 members to include an automatic recorded vote.
  • Last year, Council asked staff to examine the possibility of broadcasting meetings over the Web (webcasting) so that people can "attend" meetings from home. I will try to make webcasting a reality.
  • People who attend meetings of Council and its committees are not allowed to speak unless they are members of a delegation. However, non-delegate visitors to meetings often have meaningful suggestions and comments related to the meeting topics. I will ask that we set aside a period each meeting where the voting public can have their say.


Anonymous said...

Excellent ideas Shaun. A little transparency would be realy, really nice.