STRATFORD — Plans are underway to modify the town’s committee structure.
Stratford town council gave first reading to Bylaw 33, which includes significant changes to Stratford’s committees, at its meeting last week.
Bylaw 33 must go through a second reading prior to being adopted Jan. 1.
The new bylaw comes as current committee terms are expiring, said Mayor David Dunphy.
“Council has decided to review the committee structure to ensure that we achieve our goal of building the best community possible.”
Notable changes include the creation of an accountability and engagement committee to oversee the town’s legislation, expanding the economic development committee and renaming it the sustainability committee, combining the public works and utility committees to form the infrastructure committee, along with the renaming and realignment of other committees to maximize their function.
The changes will offer more input and oversight on Stratford’s sustainability vision.
The amendments are necessary, said Robert Hughes,
Stratford’s chief administrative officer.
“These changes will help to ensure that our departments are better synchronized with the town’s vision and council’s committees, and they will help to hold us accountable to residents for our performance.”
Stratford also formally adopted its new engagement and branding strategy into town law at the meeting.
The town has adopted an approach calling for communication, consultation and collaboration as part of its commitment to continue its growth.
The objective is to increase engagement with the town’s residents and businesses, Dunphy said.
“We want to work on communications with our residents, to get feedback and involve them as much as possible in the governance of our town. Hopefully, this will help the decision making in our town as we go forward.”
A resolution regarding the extension of sidewalks of Keppoch Road near Isleview Drive by Island Coastal was approved, but not unanimously.
Coun. Steve Ogden was the only one to vote against the motion.
“It’s not that I don’t believe residents of Isleview Drive don’t deserve a sidewalk, but it’s outside of our plan for 2012,” he said.
“It wasn’t within our control, as we had planned to do the section from Park Lane to Bonavista.”
A motion was also approved for a new home occupation massage therapy business owned by Keslie MacEachern on Browns Drive, subject to a development agreement. Home businesses are good for the community, said Coun. Emile Gallant.
“I have a home business operating next door to me and it doesn’t cause any problems at all.”