With a new Council in place, Town Clerk Brent Larmer has reviewed the number and roles of the Advisory committees and recommended changes. Most are unchanged except for minor changes in their jobs but Brent recommends dissolution of the Economic Development Advisory Committee and splitting the Environmental/Active Transportation Advisory Committee into two: a Transportation Advisory Committee and an Environmental and Climate Change Advisory Committee. Brent says that the Economic Development Advisory Committee dealt mostly with Municipal Staff updates – that implies that citizens were not actually contributing but just listening to reports from staff. The now dead CIVIC project aimed at downtown vitalization came from this committee as did most of the other Vitalization initiatives and although it’s hard to see a lot of success from them, this work is now mostly handled by the Downtown Coalition.
Another change is that the word “sustainability” will be removed from the name of the Planning and Sustainability Advisory Committee since sustainability really concerns all committees and not just planning.
The other committees were also reviewed and Brent notes that their roles might be changed when the Council completes their Strategic Plan Review on February 12 and 13. Therefore although Brent’s report will be given at the C.O.W. meeting on January 28, he suggests waiting a few weeks before making final changes.
He also points out that the current work being done on a Cultural Master Plan could well result in the need for a new committee: a Community Arts and Culture Advisory Committee.
A practical matter is that there seems to be a problem recruiting members for the Public Library board – there are currently 7 vacancies so perhaps the specified number should be reduced.
Here is a full list of current committees
- Accessibility Advisory Committee;
- Economic Development Advisory Committee – dissolution recommended
- Environmental and Active Transportation Advisory Committee – to be split into two.
- Cobourg Heritage Advisory Committee;
- Planning and Sustainability Advisory Committee; to be renamed
- Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee; and
- Cobourg Downtown Coalition Advisory Committee
- Committee of Adjustment; and
- Property Standards Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Police Services Board;
- Cobourg Library Board; and
- Downtown Business Improvement Area Board of Management
If you are interested in joining one of the Committees or Boards, you should know that:
The role of an advisory committee is to provide recommendations, advice and information to the Municipal Council on those specialized matters which relate to the purpose of the advisory committee, to facilitate public input to Municipal Council on programs and ideas and to assist in enhancing the quality of life of the community, in keeping with the Municipal Council’s Strategic Plan principles.
You can get information on applying to join at this page on the Town’s web site.