Speaking at Committee or Council

Any person who wishes to speak at a Committee or Council meeting must complete the Delegation Request Form. Shortly after submission, staff will notify you if your request has been approved. If you wish to speak at a Public Meeting that is scheduled in accordance with the Planning Act, 1990, as amended, you do not need to register as a delegation, however it is encouraged.

To ensure compliance with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, 1990, as amended, any and all materials to be displayed in the Council Chambers must be submitted to the Clerk’s Office by no later than 12:00 p.m. on the day of the meeting for Special Council Meetings occurring at 4:00 p.m., and no later than 12:00 p.m. the day before the meeting for Special Council – Public Meetings occurring at 10:00 a.m. the day before the meeting. Any materials provided after the deadline will not be accepted. 

Delegations related to staff performance, labour relations, ongoing legal proceedings or solicitation of business will not be considered by Council or a Committee.

Committee and Council meetings are live-webcasted and archived on the City’s website and may be broadcasted live through RogersTV.

For more information related to delegations at a meeting held virtually, please see the Delegation Tip Sheet.

View our Council and Committee Calendar for upcoming meetings. 

How long can I speak for?

As a delegate, you are permitted a maximum of five (5) minutes to outline your request or concerns. If your delegation consists of group of people wishing to address Council with respect to a particular position, then Council may determine that the group shall be represented by one (1) person or that the time limit shall be up to a maximum of fifteen (15) minutes. The group of people must be in attendance at the meeting to be granted any time extension. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, group delegations will not be permitted for electronic participation. 

Public Petitions

Please be advised that petitions submitted at a public meeting are considered to form part of the public record. Accordingly, if you wish to submit a petition please ensure that everyone has signed it understands that their personal information will be available to the public and will not be protected under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, 1990, as amended.

Statutory Public Meetings

Due to COVID-19 and recommendations by Waterloo Region Public Health to exercise
social distancing, members of the public are invited to submit written comments
or requests to delegate via telephone related to items on the agenda by
completing the online Delegation Request form no later than 12:00 p.m. on the
day of the meeting. All written delegation submissions will be provided to the
Mayor and Council prior to the meeting, and will form part of the public
record.

Public Meeting Call in Number

(519) 740-4680 Ext 4799

Please note this number is only permitted if you are calling in for a statutory public meeting. This number is not monitored for Regular Special Council Meetings.

 

Helpful Hints for Engaging Council 

Preparing your Delegation

Materials relating to your delegation need to be submitted to the Clerk’s Office by 4:30 p.m. the day before the meeting. Presentations must be in PowerPoint. The maximum file size to be submitted is 10 MB. If you are unable to provide your material prior to the deadline, please bring the material with you and have fifteen (15) copies for distribution. Please note that USB keys with delegation materials will not be accepted at the meeting.

At the meeting, delegates will be asked to provide a copy of their speaking notes and any information they present for inclusion in the public record. 

Delegations should prepare their presentation material using accessible formatting:

  • Use large font size (18 points or higher)
  • Include only a few bulleted points per slide
  • Use a high contrast colour scheme such as black or dark blue text on white background
  • Images or graphics should include captions or alternative text (help making PowerPoint presentations accessible)

Are you seeking funding?

If you are asking for funding or to solve a problem, be aware that you may be asked to attend Council during the budget period of the year when Council is discussing the Capital and Operating Budget. Council will base their decision on value for the community, available budget and/or available staffing.

Some things to consider are: 

  • Do you have support from a sector of the community? With limited resources available, Council is likely to concentrate on issues with a broad appeal.
  • Does your request fit in with our strategic priorities? If it does, there may be some room in the budget and staff allocation to accommodate your request.
  • Can your request wait? Council makes plans for the upcoming year in the fall/winter. If your request should be addressed in the upcoming year, Council could include it in the budget.
During your Delegation 
  • Individuals are asked to  state their name and provide their delegation. Some helpful tips for your introduction include: 
    • Introduce yourself and briefly describe your relationship to the issue. For example, you may be representing a group or you may live in or near an area where a problem is occurring.
    • State your topic. If you are requesting action to address a certain issue, describe the issue and the action you wish Council to take. If you are requesting funding, state the amount and purpose of funding.
    • Provide background information when appropriate. For instance, you may want to talk about how long the issue has been going on or how you or your organization has been affected. For funding requests, it is a good idea to provide your budget information and other revenue you have or are pursuing.
  • A bell will chime when you have one (1) minute remaining. 
  • Once concluding your delegation, please remain  to answer any questions that Committee/Council may have. Committee/Council members are permitted to ask a maximum of two (2) questions each per delegation. 
  • The appropriate way to address Committee/Council is to preface their surname with Mayor or Councillor. For example: Mayor McGarry or Chair Ermeta.
  • All questions or comments shall be made through the Chair.