(Black Press Media file photo)

(Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich council adopts new procedure bylaw, changes committee of the whole business items

Consent agenda introduced, land use matters reassigned to council meetings for efficiency, staff say

Saanich councillors have unanimously adopted new guidelines to streamline meetings and align with best practices for municipal governments across B.C.

On May 11, council received a report from Angila Bains, manager of legislative services, presenting the new council procedure bylaw and committee of the whole terms of reference, and explaining the changes – based on recommendations from council early in their term.

The bylaw dictates how council governs itself and is based on the best practices from across B.C. to ensure efficiency, Bains said. The new bylaw was several years in the making and staff conducted a full legal review to ensure it aligned with the Community Charter and the province’s guide for municipal councils.

READ ALSO: New 85-unit seniors housing development gets green light from Saanich council

Some changes were small – such as making councillors’ speaking time at both council meetings and committee of the whole consistent – while others may be more noticeable. The addition of a consent agenda will allow non-controversial business items to be grouped together and voted on all at once to save time. If residents or councillors want an item in the consent agenda debated separately, it can be pulled out.

Council also agreed to amend what matters come to committee of the whole and do away with the “mini public hearings” that were taking place.

Council meetings are where decisions are made and committee is meant for less formal, in-depth discussions, Bains said. Now, only long-term planning, policy development, budget deliberations, zoning and land development strategies and other matters that require in-depth consideration and community input will come to committee of the whole. Land-use matters such as rezoning applications will be dealt with at council meetings.

READ ALSO: Saanich adopts 5.76% property tax hike for 2021

Bains said there is no legal requirement to send these applications to committee of the whole and doing so was prolonging the process. In the past, the applications would come to the committee of the whole, receive input, be sent back for changes, then come to council for first reading and be sent to a public hearing.

Now, the applications will come to a council meeting then go to a public hearing for input. Saanich residents will still have the opportunity to weigh in on these matters both at council meetings and at public hearings, Bains said.


Do you have a story tip? Email: devon.bidal@saanichnews.com.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Saanich

Just Posted

Saanich Volunteer Services Society volunteers head out to deliver this week’s meals to local seniors. (Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)
VIDEO: Weekly meal deliveries help brighten the day for Saanich seniors

Seniors are delivered nutritional meals by a group of volunteers every Wednesday

Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lotto Max jackpot goes unclaimed again

42 of the 64 Maxmillion prizes of $1 million were won, the majority were sold in Ontario

O.K. Industries is building a quarry next to Capital Regional District land, as shown in this map from the rezoning applicaiton. (Photo courtesy District of Highlands)
Millstream Quarry wins again in court against Highlands community’s appeal

Judges rule province not obligated to investigate climate change before issuing permit

Kidspace, which took over the YMCA-YWCA childcare centre at Eagle Creek Village, plans to reopen the Y’s fitness centre as the Eagle Creek Athletic Club in September. (Photo courtesy of Kidpsace)
Former Y fitness centre in View Royal aims to reopen in September

Kidspace taking over both the gym and the childcare facility at Eagle Creek Village

Law Enforcement Torch Run in support of Special Olympics B.C. kicks off with a run at Swan Lake on June 6. The virtual fundraiser runs until June 20. (Saanich Police/Twitter)
Torch run seeks to scorch previous fundraiser, targets $75,000 for Special Olympics

Global movement shoots for 40,000 km in honour of the 40th anniversary

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

Graeme Roberts, who was mayor of Nanaimo from 1984-86, died this month at age 89. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Community Archives)
City of Nanaimo flags at half-mast as former mayor Graeme Roberts dies at 89

‘Giant-killer’ beat out Frank Ney in mayoral election in 1984

Most Read