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Will shorter sessions make council more efficient?

<p>City council sessions are becoming far too long and painful, says downtown Halifax Coun. Dawn Sloane.<br /></p>


City council sessions are becoming far too long and painful, says downtown Halifax Coun. Dawn Sloane.

“I don’t know any person that can make good decisions after sitting in a chair for 16 hours,” she said yesterday. “We don’t even let bus drivers do that.”

At tomorrow’s session, she’ll propose that the chief administrative officer have the ability to schedule council sessions over a two-day period.

She said too much is crammed into the weekly Tuesday council sessions, leading to hasty decision-making and a backlog of work.

“We have so much stuff that has to get done before we go on vacation,” she said.

And still there are a number of tenders to award and development projects to get through, she said.

But Eastern Shore Coun. Steve Streatch said he’s against the idea of spreading council over two days.

For at least a decade, he said, regional council has taken place Tuesday evenings at 6 p.m. and that’s the way it should remain.

He said if councillors could focus on “tightening up” and moving through topics more quickly, there would be lots of time for the agenda.

Issues such as the cat bylaw and taxi deregulation have seen city council debates lasting late into the night and spread over numerous sessions in the past year.


 
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