Edmonton Minute: City Auditor, Transparency Lacking, and Regulating Social Media Use
Edmonton Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Edmonton politics
This Week In Edmonton:
There will be a City Council meeting this morning at 9:30 am to discuss 22 different topics. Those topics include using $23 million of the City's COVID relief funds on potential subsidies for projects beginning construction this year. Elsewhere on the agenda is land acquisition for LRT expansion and a nearly $1.7 million loan to Fort Edmonton. This meeting will likely not finish today, meaning it will continue on Wednesday at 9:30 am.
- On Tuesday, the Agenda Review Committee will be meeting at 9:00 am, followed by the Code of Conduct Sub-Committee at 9:30 am which will consider when Councillors are allowed to block or delete people from their social media pages. Is that seriously a priority right now? Or ever? At 1:30 pm, there will also be a City Council Public Hearing to consider zoning variances throughout the City.
- On Wednesday, after Monday's City Council meeting concludes around noon, the City Auditor Recruitment Committee will continue to consider potential candidates to become the City's next auditor. Whoever gets the nod will have a very big job to do (see below).
Last Week In Edmonton:
- Mike Nickel became the first sitting Councillor and the third person overall to announce he is running for Mayor. The other two candidates who have announced so far are Cheryll Watson, the former head of Innovate Edmonton, and Diana Steele, President of the Crestwood Community League. With Don Iveson announcing he won't be running for re-election, we expect quite a few more candidates will be putting their names forward in the weeks to come.
- The C.D. Howe Institute published a study that compared the fiscal transparency of 31 major cities across Canada. Edmonton and London tied for last, with an F grade. Lots of work for Council to do to catch up with Vancouver and Surrey, which both received an A, and even Calgary which received a B.
- A private school will be built on a surplus school site in southeast Edmonton after Council's Executive Committee agreed to administration's recommendations. The Edmonton Public School Board opposed the sale, with the Board's Chair, Trisha Estabrook, saying that they opposed public money going to support private schools. Only problem? The school is buying the land from the City for $2.5 million, so money is actually going from a private school to the public - the exact opposite of their complaint.
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