Open & Closed Meetings
Most meetings start at 7 p.m. and are open to the public. Meetings are normally held as scheduled but rescheduling does occur. If you are interested in attending a Council or Committee Meeting, please call Town Hall at 905-563-8205 to ensure that the meeting is proceeding as scheduled.
Generally, municipalities in the Province of Ontario and their Committees and local boards are required by law to give notice and hold their meetings in public.
The Town of Lincoln takes a number of steps to ensure the highest degree of openness and transparency for meetings of Council and its committees.
- We give notice of all meetings of Council and its committees in accordance with principles detailed in Council’s Procedure By-law
- We make agendas, reports and by-laws to be considered at meetings available for inspection at Town Hall
- We post agendas, reports and by-laws to our website before meetings and we post decisions and minutes as soon as possible after meetings
- We only close meetings when legally permitted or required to do so, and confine the debate in those sessions to the confidential information subject to consideration
- We minimize the amount of confidential information in reports and documents before committee and Council
Sometimes it is necessary and appropriate to close a meeting to the public so that Council or one of its Committees can consider confidential information, as permitted by law, in regard to certain matters
Except for votes on procedure or votes to give confidential instructions to staff or agents of the Town; no votes are taken in closed session
A meeting may be closed if:
- The Town is involved in a lawsuit
- Council is considering purchasing a piece of land
- Council must deal with a labour relations issue
The permitted reasons for going into a closed meeting are:
- The security of property of the municipality or local board
- Personal matters about an identifiable individual, including employees
- A proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land
- Labour relations or employee negotiations
- Litigation or potential litigation
- Advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege
- A matter authorized by another provincial statute
- If the subject matter relates to a request under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act
- The meeting is held for educating and training and no member discusses or deals with a matter in a way that materially advances the business or decision-making of the council or local board.
If you believe that a meeting has been improperly closed:
If you believe that a meeting has been improperly closed to the public, you may at any time discuss your thoughts and concerns with the Municipal Clerk to obtain additional information regarding Provincial Law and Council’s Procedure By-law with respect to open and closed meetings.
Formal requests for an investigation must be in writing, accompanied by an application fee of $125.00 and be directed to the Town Clerk.
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