Council has integrity chat

The city’s integrity commissioner, John Craig, discussed ethics with Barrie city council, this week.
Craig, a former Barrie city clerk, gave a presentation to council on Wednesday, highlighting the intricacies of council’s new Code of Conduct. The session included information on related federal and provincial legislation, and various municipal policies and procedures.
Duties of the commissioner include providing:
• Information to members of City Council concerning their obligations;
• Advice for members regarding specific situations as they relate to the application of the code and other policies and procedures that relate to the ethical behaviour of members, including general information on conflict of interest matters;
• Information to the public regarding the code, and the obligations of members of council.
Craig will also be responsible for providing an annual report on the activities of the commissioner.
Questions asked of Craig by members of council included how complaints are to be handled, how the code applies to family of members of council, or individuals representing them, and the acceptance for gifts, or tokens of appreciation for occasions like speaking events.
The session wrapped up with Craig suggesting that not all situations will be cut and dried, and that some may require an “interpretation based on the specific details of the situation.”
The role will come with a retainer fee of $1,000, and a billing rate of $125 an hour, plus expenses, with a cap of $5,000 in relation to providing training of council, board and committee members about provisions of the code.

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