Leading Up To The October 22 Chatham-Kent Municipal Election—Part Four

Chatham-Kent councillor is a part-time position. In 2016, a councillor’s honorarium was $26,542 per year.

A Note About Entries

Leading Up To The October 22 Chatham-Kent Municipal Election will provide information (interesting and helpful information, I hope) about the powers, duties, and functions of the Municipality of Chatham-Kent, from garbage collection to mayor and councillors; about voting; about resident’s opinions on the effectiveness of the Municipality; and perhaps about possible improvements.

New entries will be added until the election. If you’d like to be notified of new entries, use Subscribe/RSS.

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Comments and corrections are welcome. You can comment ― and read other people’s comments ― at the end of this entry, also.

Clair Culliford

The Entries, So Far
Part 1. About The Municipality Of Chatham-Kent
Part 2. About Ontario Municipalities
Part 3. Wards, Mayor, Councillors, Council, School Board Representatives, & Voting―#1
Part 4. Wards, Mayor, Councillors, Council, School Board Representatives, & Voting―#2
Part 5. A Proposal To Help Voters Decide Which Candidate To Vote For
Part 6: What Chatham-Kentians Might Want To Say To The Newly-Elected Council

Part 4: Wards, Mayor, Councillors, Council, School Board Representatives, & Voting—#2

Councillors

Chatham-Kent councillor is a part-time position.

In 2016, a councillor’s honorarium was $26,542 per year. Councillor’s benefits (Canada Pension Plan and Employer Health Tax) total $152. There are allowances for office equipment, travel (local and international), training, and automobile expenses. The current figures are unavailable.

Municipal councillors in Ontario aren’t required to pay taxes on one third of their incomes.

Role Of Councillors

“As a councillor, you have three main roles to play in your municipality: a representative role, a policy-making role and a stewardship role. These roles may often overlap. You will be called on to consider and make decisions on issues that will sometimes be complex and controversial. Many of those decisions will have long-term consequences for your municipality that extend beyond your four-year term of office, and should be made in the context of your municipality’s directions for the long-term health and welfare of your community.” (Municipal Councillor’s Guide)

Councillor Qualifications

To run for councillor, you must…

a. reside in Chatham-Kent or be a non-resident owner or tenant of land here or be the spouse of a non-resident owner or tenant of land here;

b. be a Canadian citizen;

c. be at least 18 years old;

d. have paid $100 to file nomination papers.

(Part 4: Wards, Mayor, Councillors, Council, School Board Representatives, & Voting ― #2 continues below the ad. Click or tap the ad for more information about the Art & Heirloom Shoppe.)

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Council

Council ― the mayor and the 16 councillors together ― make the Municipality of Chatham-Kent’s large, overall decisions: finances, services for residents, infrastructure repair (bridges!), and planning for the future. They are assisted in this by C-K staff: Chief Administrative Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Municipal Clerk, heads of departments, and the like.

Chatham-Kent Council meets twice a month, except for July and August when meetings are usually once a month. Meetings are open to the public and are listed at https://www.chatham-kent.ca/local-government/council/council-meetings.

Meetings are chaired by the mayor.

Role Of Council

The Ontario Municipal Councillor’s Guide states that the role of council is…

(a) to represent the public and to consider the well-being and interests of the municipality;

(b) to develop and evaluate the policies and programs of the municipality;

(c) to determine which services the municipality provides;

(d) to ensure that administrative policies, practices and procedures and controllership policies, practices and procedures are in place to implement the decisions of council;

(d.1) to ensure the accountability and transparency of the operations of the municipality, including the activities of the senior management of the municipality;

(e) to maintain the financial integrity of the municipality.

Council Code Of Conduct & Integrity Commissioner

Chatham-Kent has a Code Of Conduct For Members Of Council: https://www.chatham-kent.ca/local-government/council/CodeofConduct. It covers such matters as the impropriety of council members accepting gifts, the improper use of a council members’ influence, and the conduct of council members at council and at committee meetings. It includes information on how to lodge a complaint against a council member. 

There is a Chatham-Kent integrity commissioner to advise council members about the code and to investigate possible code violations.

The commissioner is paid $400 per day or $200 per half day whenever his or her services are required.

Sources

http://sydenhamcurrent.ca/2016/08/29/
chatham-kent-hires-integrity-commissioner/

http://www.mah.gov.on.ca/AssetFactory
.aspx?did=4965

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