Saturday, September 28, 2013

Council seeks more consultation and conversation with provincial cabinet officials

When it comes to access to visiting members of provincial and federal cabinets, Prince Rupert City Councillors are feeling a little left out.

At their September 9th Council session, Councillors Thorkelson and Garon both expressed their frustrations at the lack of access made available to visiting cabinet ministers to the region.

Councillor Thorkelson led off the discussion on the lack of conversation between municipal and provincial officials, expressing her frustration, disappointment and concern over the recent visits from a number of cabinet ministers. Tours of the Northwest which it would seem, did not include a chance to stop in and answers some questions of City Council.

Following Councillor Thorkelson's points, Councillor Garon echoed some of Thorkelson's thoughts, suggesting that she too felt slighted by the lack of attention to city concerns from the provincial ministers.

Of the string of visits in recent weeks, the pass through from Mr. Coleman seems to be the one that has stuck in the craw of Council the most. With Councillor Thorkelson suggesting that Council should issue an invitation to the provincial minister, seeking Mr. Coleman's return to Prince Rupert  to attend to Council chambers in order to meet with Council as a whole..

You can review the frustrations of the Council members from our City Council Timeline.

For those looking for the video review of the discussion, the City Council Video archive offers up more, the Council members do a little venting at the one hour,  five minute mark.

Interestingly enough, shortly after the Councillors outlined their frustrations over the lack of contact, the Mayor in his "Mayor's Report" observed that he had actually met with Cabinet Minister Rich Coleman, as well as with Ministers Coralee Oakes and John Rustad during their recent visits to the city. (1:14:00-1:26:00  on the Council Video archive.)

Maybe they didn't catch that note  by the Mayor, as Council members didn't offer up much of a follow up to the Mayor's report.

Following his presentation, they had no questions for him in regard to the nature of those conversations with the visiting Cabinet ministers, leaving us all wondering what may have been discussed.

Perhaps the Councillors were saving their questions, hoping for the chance to ask them at some future time.

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