By MorinvilleNews.com Staff
Morinville – Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to begin posting agenda packages online prior to council meetings once again. Under the Municipal Government Act there is only a reference to the method of giving notice to the public for council meetings. A two-year-old Morinville bylaw requires the town to provide notice of council meetings by publishing in the local newspaper and posting notice in Civic Plaza, now the Parish Hall.
Administration conducted a survey of surrounding municipalities as well as similar sized municipalities in the province to see what others did. Municipalities smaller than Morinville tended to post only the agenda online, while those communities similar in size or larger than Morinville tended to post the entire package on the municipality’s website.
The recommendation was for council to approve posting agenda packages to provide increased transparency and in the hopes of increasing participation by the public and media by providing immediate access to information.
Councillor David Pattison said he did some research into whether or not packages should be published online and learned from Municipal Affairs that any package that goes to council should also go to public, excepting those items that are to be protected under the Freedom or Information and Privacy Act (FOIP).
It is not yet known how long before council meetings the information will be made available online, but some parts of documents will be watermarked with the words DRAFT to add further clarification to the public and the media.