Dr. Dawg

Ottawa City Hall: transparency is so last year [updated]

| Disqus Comments

Ottawa City Hall 2011.jpg

For a little local colour:

The new Ottawa City Council policy is to keep us all in the dark. The Council has just finished voting to cease preparing synopsis minutes of Council committee meetings, where most of the work of Council gets done.

Councillor Wilkinson’s motion, seconded by Councillor Qadri:

”[…] Therefore be it resolved that Standing Committees and the Transit Commission continue to provide synopsis minutes.”

Voting in favour (7): Deans, Fleury, Hobbs, Holmes, Monette, Taylor, Wilkinson

Opposed (12): Blais, Chernushenko [SHAME!], Chiarelli, Desroches, El-Chantiry, Harder, Hume, Moffatt, Qadri, Thompson, Tierney, Watson

The new regime—all roads and secrecy—is starting to make former Mayor Larry O’Brien’s clownish rule look positively benign.

What are they trying to hide?

Why not drop the Mayor and your councillor a line to ask what happened to transparency at Ottawa City Hall?

UPDATE: Councillor David Chernushenko responds:

Thanks for your letter. I am puzzled that your are seeing my vote as “against transparency”. I was casting a vote for greater transparency! Currently all that transpires in the city of Ottawa’s committee meetings is reduced down to “synopsis” minutes. These are a staff member’s summary of what was said by council members, staff and public delegations who come to committee. As conscientious as our staff may be in preparing the synopsis minutes, there will always be an element of interpretation. Emphasis, tone, humour and irony are not captured. Our objective in moving to audio recording at all committee meetings is to allow for home listening, archiving and, upon request, full transcription and preparation such version as braille. A written report on decision and action items would be prepared to accompany this file, and we will need to have excellent indexing of topics and keywords to allow for easy and accurate searching.

I felt that by supporting this motion I was making committee deliberations fully transparent, which is not currently the case.

I can see that this is still an imperfect solution. We will need to work to ensure that all citizens can have access to these documents. I am committed to taking whatever next steps are required to improve transparency.

Return to the home page

blog comments powered by Disqus

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Dr. Dawg published on April 14, 2011 8:09 PM.

Afghan detainee documents: Liberal-Conservative-Bloc collaboration continues was the previous entry in this blog.

Harper Youth goons try to seize ballot box [updated] is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Powered by Movable Type 6.3.6