Code of Conduct for Council, Committees and Local Boards

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Code of Conduct

In March of 2019, the Council of the Township of Tyendinaga passed By-law 2019-11 which approved a Code of Conduct for Council and Committee Members.

The public expects the highest standard of conduct from the Members of elected to local government. These leaders are expected to carry out their duties in a fair, impartial, transparent and professional manner.

The Code of Conduct helps to ensure a common basis of acceptable behaviour. These standards ensure elected representatives conduct themselves with integrity and respect. The Code of Conduct applies to Members of Council and Committee. It may be extended to Members of Local Boards.

Council Staff Relations Policy

The Township of Tyendinaga is committed to a respectful and productive relationship between and amongst Council, Members of Council, and the officers and employees of the municipality, in furtherance of their respective roles established by statute, municipal by-laws and policies, corporate administrative direction, and operating conventions. As such, Council approved a Council/Staff Relations Policy in March of 2019 which applies to all elected officials and staff of the Municipality.

Integrity Commissioner

The Township of Tyendinaga has appointed Mr. John Ewart of Ewart, O’Dwyer Barristers & Solicitors as the Integrity Commissioner for the municipality and authorize him to conduct inquiries upon a complaint for rules governing the ethical behaviour of members of Council as they pertain to the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act and Code of Conduct.

What is an Integrity Commissioner?

The Integrity Commissioner’s responsibilities include:

  • Conduct inquiries upon complaint for Municipal Conflict of Interest Act and Code of Conduct matters
  • Provide advice to members of Council and local boards regarding their obligations under the code of conduct the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act
  • Provide educational information to the public, the municipality and members of Council and local boards about the Code of Conduct and Municipal Conflict of Interest Act

The duties and responsibilities of the Integrity Commissioner are further detailed in Section 223 of the Municipal Act, 2001.  It is the responsibility of the Integrity Commissioner to report directly to County Council.

Complaint Filing Process

Any individual who identifies or witnesses behaviour or activity by a sitting Member of Council that they believe is in contravention of the Code of Conduct for Members of Council or the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act may file a formal complaint with the following conditions:

  1. All complaints shall be in writing and shall be dated and signed by an identifiable individual using the Formal Municipal Integrity Commissioner Complaint Enquiry Form or the Application for Municipal Integrity Commissioner Investigation under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act Form.

  2. The complaint must set out reasonable and probable grounds for the allegation that the Member has contravened the Code of Conduct or the Conflict of Interest Act. A supporting sworn affidavit setting out the evidence in support of the allegation must also be included.

  3. The complaint shall be filed with the CAO/Deputy Clerk who shall forward the matter to the Integrity Commissioner for initial classification to determine if the matter is, on its face, a complaint with respect to non-compliance.

Closed Meeting Investigations

The Township has appointed Local Authority Services Limited (LAS) – Aird & Berlis LLP. as the Closed Meeting Investigator for the municipality and authorized them to conduct investigations. All requests for a closed meeting investigation are submitted to LAS to review and investigate accordingly.

How to Request an Investigation

Members of the public, including corporations, may submit requests through the CAO/Deputy Clerk relating to compliance with the Municipal Act, 2001 for meetings or part of meetings that are closed to the public.

The identity of the requestor will be treated as confidential by the Township and the Investigator, unless authorization is given by the requestor to release his or her identity.

The Request Form for a closed meeting investigation is available online or at the Municipal office.

All complaints must contain the following information:

  • The name of the municipality
  • Requestor’s name, mailing address, telephone number, and email address
  • Date of the closed meeting under consideration
  • Nature and background of the particular occurrence
  • Any activities undertaken to resolve the concern
  • Any other relevant information
  • Direction with respect to release of identity
  • Original signature

Once the request is received by the CAO/Deputy Clerk, the CAO/Deputy Clerk will enact the following procedures:

  • Ensure that the requests remain confidential
  • Assign a file number and record that number on the request
  • Forward the request to the Municipal Closed Meeting Investigator by regular mail

For all requests, the Township shall supply the Investigator with the following information or documentation as requested by the Investigator related to a complaint:

  • Certified copy of Notice of Meeting
  • Certified copy of the agenda
  • Certified copy of the minutes of the meeting
  • Relevant resolutions
  • Municipal contact list
  • Any other documents requested