City of Brantford launched a community consultation campaign, asking residents to provide their feedback about Bill 3, on Monday, July 10, 2023.
Strong Mayors, Building Homes Act, 2022, is provincial legislation that provides specific powers and duties to the Mayor as the Head of Council.
Strong mayor powers offer tools to help Heads of Council cut red tape and speed up the delivery of key shared municipal-provincial priorities such as housing, transit and infrastructure in their municipalities. As of July 1, 2023 these powers have now been extended to the Mayor for the City of Brantford.
Among the new powers that the Mayor can exercise, if he so chooses, are:
- The power to establish or dissolve Committees.
- The power to appoint the Chairs and Vice-Chairs of Committees.
- The power to assign functions to Committees.
Powers relating to the City Administration
- The Mayor has the power to appoint the municipality’s chief administrative officer (CAO). The Mayor has the power to hire or dismiss a “head of any division or the head of any other part of the organizational structure”. City officials excluded from this authority are listed in the legislation.
- The Mayor may determine the City’s organizational structure.The Mayor can direct City staff to undertake research and provide advice to the Mayor and City Council on City policies and programs.
Power to introduce the City Budget
- The Mayor shall present a proposed City budget no later than February 1. If the Mayor does not present a proposed budget, this responsibility is forfeited to City Council.
- City Council has 30 days to amend the proposed budget after the Mayor presents it or may choose to shorten this period.
- The Mayor may veto Council amendments up to 10 days after Council adopts the amendment or may choose to shorten this period. If the Mayor does not exercise his veto the amended budget is deemed adopted.
- City Council may override the Mayor’s veto with a 2/3 vote up to 15 days later in which case the amended budget is deemed adopted.
- If Council does not exercise an override of the Mayor’s veto the proposed budget is deemed adopted.
Mayor’s Veto and Provincial Priorities
The Act introduces the power for the Mayor to veto a by-law if in the Mayor’s opinion a by-law or part of it could potentially interfere with a prescribed provincial priority. The Mayor may also introduce new matters or a by-law without notice to a Council meeting in order to advance a provincial priority. Any by-law the Mayor presents requires a 1/3 vote of Council to pass.
“Before making a decision on whether or not to exercise any new authority, and in the interest of transparency, inclusivity, and democratic participation, I want to ensure that the public has opportunities to provide their feedback,” says Mayor Kevin Davis. “I look forward to the community’s input to help inform decisions about when/how the Strong Mayors, Building Homes Act can best advance our community’s priorities.”
Residents are encouraged to provide their feedback until July 30, 2023 at LetsTalkBrantford.ca/StrongMayorsAct .