Getting your views in front of members of city council - pretty easy.

News 100 yellowBY Staff

January 21st, 2018



City Council seeks different public points of view through the delegation process at statutory meetings.

Many may not be aware that there is a simple and efficient way for people to express solidarity for or against a motion that is before a city Council.

It takes the form of an e-mail to, or a telephone call to 905-335-7600, ext. 7481 or letter (which at this point would need to be hand-delivered) to the City Clerk at City Hall, 426 Brant St, Burlington, ON L7R 3Z6 ).

Communications received prior to noon of the day before Council meets permits the City Clerk to include the number of communications received along with any delegate submissions to the Councillors for review prior to the scheduled meeting. The absolute deadline for receipt is prior to when Council sits to decide the matter (which will likely follow all delegations made on the evening of the 23rd.

It should state the date and name of the meeting that the communications are directed to. In this case “Jan 23, 2018 Planning and Development Committee

ECoB ledtter write graphicThe letter you send should look something like this:

My name is (first-name, last-name).

I live at (Burlington residence address complete with Postal Code).

I am of voting age.

I support or reject (concise expression of what you want).

Sample expressions:

• a motion to delay approval of the Official Plan until after the upcoming Municipal Election

• Councillor Meed Ward’s 8 (or specify which of the 8) motions as outlined in the Jan 23rd Agenda Package

• the delegation as presented by (named delegate)

I wish to preserve my right to seek an appeal through the OMB or LPAT should Council approve/reject (concise expression of what you don’t want).

Thank you

Any communications from an organization on a Municipal Planning & Development matter can be challenged for misrepresentation by a legal authority under the Ontario Planning Act such as City Council, Regional Council, the OMB or LPAT.

To meet such a challenge, communications must be approved by at minimum, the majority of the elected executive of the organization or preferably, a majority of the membership vote at an organization sanctioned meeting. The evidence of compliance takes the form of the minutes taken at the meeting which must include a copy of the approved communication complete with the tally of votes for and against along with a list of the meeting participants.

Some people feel that these letters just get added to the minutes of the meeting and are ignored – not so.  Members of Council pay close attention to these letters – they are an indication of just how people feel.

The Gazette is indebted to a citizen for the details on how to be heard at city hall.

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3 comments to Getting your views in front of members of city council – pretty easy.

  • Judy Gilbert

    Good to know. Thank you.

  • Tom Muir

    I would add that since this Jan 23 is a statutory meeting, any citizen can just show up and speak at the meeting, with no prior notice.

    The meeting chair is supposed to call out for these speakers three times, and then delegations will be closed.

    They will speak after all the registered delegates have spoken. You can speak from the heart, or from notes, and you can submit what you want to say in writing later.

    You get up to 10 minutes, but can use as little of this time as you wish.

    Good way for attendees to add support or opposition to the registered delegations viewpoints, and to let councilors know more of the depth of public opinion.

    If you are going to the rally, then this is a Planning Act legal requirement meeting that is a convenient opportunity to speak as well.

    Just stand up and be heard.