Last week was the final meeting of the 2015-18 South Frontenac Council. December 4th will be the inaugural meeting of the new Council when the Councillors will be sworn in, and begin carrying out their duties.
However, this particular group will be better prepared for the challenges of the next four years than any previous one. Lured by a light supper, they met this last Tuesday at 5:30 for an intensive orientation to their new roles and responsibilities.
The agenda began with iPad training, contact information, roles and responsibilities, township organizational chart and other such useful information, winding up with a primer on taxation and budget. In the middle of the agenda, under ‘Initial Decisions’ is a list of some of the items to be addressed at the first December meeting. The next-to-last item, just above Cannabis, is the bombshell: “Retirement of Chief Administrative Officer and Recruitment Process: It is anticipated that Wayne Orr, CAO will be submitting a notice of his plan to retire at the end of July. Council will need to determine a process for recruitment.”
As stated earlier in the meeting, the CAO is responsible for the effective administration of all township operations by acting as a liaison between Council and staff and by coordinating activities between departments.
During his time with South Frontenac, Orr has been instrumental in assisting Council to: achieve full amalgamation of the four districts; develop a budget process that is thorough and timely; make Council meetings more businesslike and accessible, and build a prosperous Township with a reasonable taxation rate. Residents who come to meetings are able to hear what the individual councillors are saying, and are provided with specific information on a screen about each issue being discussed. Council no longer wastes meeting time reviewing the various cattle losses to predators, approving the provincial remunerations one at a time…
Orr is responsible for initiating this orientation process, and the one planned for November 27, an introduction to the various Township departments. He will be difficult to replace.
Note: The material provided for this orientation session may prove valuable to anyone curious about the budgeting process, how taxation is calculated, the Township’s strategic plan, etc. It is available on the South Frontenac Township’s website, under meeting agendas: Nov 13 COW.