For this post, I am going to do things a little different…I am going to start from the end of the meeting – yesterday an article arose from one of our local news outlets that seems to be factually incorrect (it appears as though this article has since been updated, however)…so I thought I should start by reporting what actually happened at the end of Monday’s Council Meeting.

It was reported that the Deputy Mayor breached procedural bylaws and “seized the power” to adjourn the meeting after the mayor had called for a break. In the article from The Orangeville Banner, they reported that Mayor Williams had said “I don’t think he should’ve taken over because a break was called. That was improper. The deputy mayor did not follow procedure.” and that “When somebody breaks procedural policy and takes over a meeting when they have no right, that’s concerning.” In The Banner’s article, Mayor Williams had also suggested that he had merely stepped outside to “get a Gravol” as he had been under the weather.

Let’s flip back to reality now…here’s what actually happened. Was Mayor Williams under the weather? Yup. He was late arriving to the meeting because he had actually called in sick…however changed his mind and decided to come. Was Deputy Mayor Maycock “seizing the power”? Nope. Did he break protocol? I would say no. And here is why.

If you take a few minutes and watch the meeting (which is available online on Rogers – click here) – Don’t worry, you don’t have to watch the whole thing…just fast-forward to the end…with a few minutes to spare. You will hear Mayor Williams say “At the end of bylaws, I think I shall take my leave and hand over the reigns once agin to Deputy Mayor Maycock and I thank you for that.” And as the vote to approve the bylaws is happening, Mayor Williams is seen packing up his laptop and such. At the end of the vote, Mayor Williams calls a 5 minute recess and immediately, the clerk leans over and says something to the Mayor. (likely asking why the heck you would call a 5 minute recess when the only thing left on the agenda is adjournment…but I’m just speculating there…) The Mayor then says there is a motion to adjourn moved and seconded…Councillor Wilson put up his hand and states that he wanted to move a motion to continue the closed portion of the meeting and while he was mid-sentence, he was {quite rudely} interrupted by the Mayor who banged his gavel, called a 5-minute recess and left.

At that point, a very stunned and awkward silence filled the chambers. And puzzled looks were being shared by members of Council, Town Staff AND the members of the public and media that were still present. It was odd. It was awkward. It was baffling. A couple of minutes passed, and the Deputy Mayor took the chair (as he was told previously by the Mayor that he would be) and asked for a motion to adjourn which was moved, seconded and voted in favour of unanimously.

I know the story sounds better when it would seem that the Deputy Mayor went rogue…but that’s just simply NOT how it all played out. Watch it…you’ll see.

In my humble opinions, what is very clear is that the issues with Council have not improved. There still appears to be the need to create drama rather than focusing on the task at hand…RUNNING THE TOWN!!

More Procedural Issues?

Councillor Sylvia Bradley had some issues with the procedural bylaws not being followed at the prior meeting on November 28th. Her biggest concern was impartiality – specifically with the discussion regarding the contract with the Citizen as well as the discussion about the “kill switch” as brought up by Mark Whitcombe at the previous meeting. There was also concern about procedure not being followed when a member of council “called the vote” at the previous meeting – according to the procedural bylaw, when a member calls for the vote, discussion must cease and the vote be taken. However, at the last meeting, a lengthy discussion continued after a vote was called. Councillor Bradley felt that as Chair, it was the Mayor’s responsibility to maintain order and ensure that procedures are followed. She stated that she hopes going forward, there will be a return to decorum in the New Year. Mayor Williams replied that he has tried to be pretty lenient as Chair and that everyone has bent the rules of procedure at some point.

Age-Friendly Community

A 3-yr strategic action plan was presented to Council by Councillor Scott Wilson as chair of the Age-Friendly Committee. The plan includes identifying the areas that the Town of Orangeville needs to prioritize to ensure that Orangeville can gain status as an Age-Friendly Community – A vibrant and safe community where we can all age with dignity, respect and purpose. Many areas were identified as strengths in the community but there was also a number of opportunities that were recognized. The action plan presentation with all of the priorities outlined can be found here

Donor Clinic

A local resident needs our help – Wayne Bryan is battling leukemia and requires a bone marrow transplant. TODAY, Wednesday, December 14th, there is a swab clinic being help from 3pm-8pm at DCAFS Building at 655 Riddell Rd. If you are between the ages of 18-35, pop in and get swabbed…you could be his match and help to save his life! If you are unable to attend, or don’t fall into the correct age group, there are other ways to help – Attend a blood donor clinic that is being held on December 28th at The Best Western in Orangeville from 3pm to 8pm!

Stockings for Seniors

In a previous post, I sent out a call to action and challenged each one of you to stuff a stocking for a senior. The response has been GREAT, but there is still more needed. At this very moment, Tracy Haworth still needs 250 stockings over the 6 days to ensure that every senior will get a stocking this Christmas! For information on how to give, or what to give, visit this link! And drop your donations off at 158 Parkview Drive in Orangeville. HURRY – There is still time!!!

Merry Christmas!!!

I would like to wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas! May your holidays be bright and full of love and time spent with family!!

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