Home Announcements 34 Closed Meetings In 14 Months – What Don’t We Know?
34 Closed Meetings In 14 Months – What Don’t We Know?

34 Closed Meetings In 14 Months – What Don’t We Know?

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How many in-camera meetings should a municipal council hold during its tenure? There are those times when money and personnel matters need to be dealt with initially out of the public’s eye ….otherwise going in-camera on any whim never serves a community at large and is actually a breach of the Municipal Act.

Sooner or later  keeping information constantly away from taxpayers can never be justified. Last century a bylaw was approved regarding media being notified 24 hours or more before an in-camera was to be conducted…..point being, the media could ask councillors what took place once they returned in open session. The bylaw lasted about 48 hours when majority of council moved the bylaw be waived so members could go in-camera.  

If an in-camera meeting is called to intentionally hide facts, results, intentions or conflicts of interest…..then the Provincial Ombudsman should be informed especially if this is a regular routine in dealing with municipal matters. Yes there are times when in-camera sessions are warranted,  the number may have to be monitored by interested taxpayers and reported accordingly, wouldn’t you agree?  One only has to browse the meeting calendar on the Town of Midland’s own website to see the multitude of closed meetings.  Perhaps Council can speak to why they have had 34 closed (in-camera) meetings in their short 14 months in office – with many more likely to ensue given the current state of human resources and union negotiations at Town Hall.

The term “in camera” is from the Latin word for “chamber.” In the context of board meetings it means an “in private” session; a meeting, or portion of a meeting, where one or more of the people normally in attendance are excused.
In-Camera
In-Camera
Defined

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Comment(2)

  1. Dear Midland town hall, please tell us, it was a typo error and that 34 in-camera meetings often secretly held by council in past 14 months isn’t true! 34 meetings? Are you kidding taxpayers? A total of 34 in-camera meetings in the municipal building in just over a year is stunning . The provincial Ombudsman’s office with now more teeth plans follow up complaints regarding more and more in-camera meetings conducted by dozens and dozens of municipal councils, both large and small right across the province. Over the past few decades more councils have felt it has been a good time saving holding idea to conduct quickie in-camera sessions as opposed to waiting a few more weeks for a regular public session. But come on people, 34 in-camera meetings in 14 months is a formula for distrust and a defiant lack of transparency! Tax paying ratepayers surely can’t help feel they are getting the short end of the stick especially when they recall those candidates for office desiring a more open municipal government. Wow 34 in-camera meetings in 14 months? do you think this is a new Olympic record? Record be damned! this many in-camera meetings at town hall is uncalled for, plain and simple.

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34 Closed Meetings In 14 Months – What Don’t We Know?

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