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Council and Ward Structure Review: Public Information Sessions

Posted on Wednesday March 15, 2017

The Town of Essex is undertaking a Council and Ward Structure Review that will consider the process by which the Deputy Mayor is elected, the composition of Town Council, and the number and size of wards.

BACKGROUND
The composition of Essex Town Council and the process by which the Deputy Mayor is elected were established through a Minister’s Order that took effect at amalgamation on January 1, 1999.

Council is currently comprised of the Mayor, Deputy Mayor and five (5) councillors. The Mayor is the only position to be elected at large. The Deputy Mayor is elected from among council members at the inaugural meeting. Both the Mayor and Deputy Mayor represent the Town of Essex on Essex County Council.

The municipality is currently divided into four wards. Ward 1 (Essex Centre) and Ward 3 (former Colchester South) are each represented by two (2) councillors. Wards 2 (former Colchester North) and 4 (Harrow Centre) are each represented by one (1) councillor.

WHY CONDUCT A REVIEW?
Almost 20 years after amalgamation, Council is conducting this review to ensure that the ward and council structure continue to provide a system of effective and equitable representation for all residents.

Watson and Associates Economists Ltd. have been retained to conduct the Council and Ward Structure Review based on the Terms of Reference approved by Council. Public and stakeholder consultation is an important component of the review.

Watson and Associates will be on hand at the following Public Information Sessions to present draft options and gather public feedback:

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 29, 2017
6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Essex Centre Sports Complex – Shaheen Room
60 Fairview Avenue West, Essex Centre

THURSDAY, MARCH 30, 2017
6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Camoes Portuguese Club
290 Sinasac Avenue West, Harrow Centre

Following the public consultation process, Watson and Associates will present their findings and a set of options for Council’s consideration. Any changes to the ward or Council structure must be confirmed in a municipal by-law that is passed prior to December 31, 2017.

Members of the community are encouraged to attend one of the Public Information Sessions to learn more about the review and to provide input.

Robert W. Auger, Manager of Legislative Services/Clerk
Town of Essex, 33 Talbot Street South, Essex, Ontario N8M 1A8
Email: rauger@essex.ca
Phone: 519-776-7336 ext. 1132