This archived statute consolidation is current to July 16, 2002 and includes changes enacted and in force by that date. For the most current information, click here.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT — Continued
[RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 323

Part 5 — Corporate Powers and Their Use

Division 1 — Corporate Status and Governing Bodies

Corporations created

173 Each municipality and each regional district is a corporation.

Governing bodies

174 (1) The governing body of a municipality is its council and the governing body of a regional district is its board.

(2) The powers, duties and functions of a municipality or regional district are to be exercised and performed by its council or board unless this or any other Act provides otherwise.

(3) A local government, in exercising or performing the powers, duties and functions conferred on it by an enactment, is acting as the governing body of the municipality or regional district.

(4) Despite any change in their membership, the council of a municipality and the board of a regional district are continuing bodies and may complete any proceedings started but not completed before the change.

Local government jurisdiction

175 A local government may only exercise or perform its powers, duties and functions within the boundaries of the municipality or regional district unless this or another Act provides that they may also be exercised or performed outside those boundaries.

Division 2 — General Corporate Powers

Corporate powers of local governments

176 (1) Subject to the specific limitations and conditions established by or under this or another Act, the corporate powers of a local government include the following:

(a) to make agreements respecting

(i) the local government's services, including agreements respecting the undertaking, provision and operation of its services, other than the exercise of its regulatory authority,

(ii) operation and enforcement in relation to the local government's exercise of its regulatory authority, and

(iii) the management of property or an interest in property held by the local government;

(b) to make agreements with a public authority respecting

(i) activities, works or services within the powers of a party to the agreement, other than the exercise of regulatory authority, including agreements respecting the undertaking, provision and operation of activities, works and services,

(ii) operation and enforcement in relation to the exercise of regulatory authority within the powers of a party to the agreement, and

(iii) the management of property or an interest in property held by a party to the agreement;

(c) to provide assistance for the purpose of benefiting the community or any aspect of the community;

(d) to acquire, hold, manage and dispose of land, improvements, personal property or other property, and any interest or right in or with respect to that property;

(e) to delegate its powers, duties and functions, including those specifically established by an enactment, to its officers and employees, its committees or its members, or to other bodies established by the local government;

(f) to engage in commercial, industrial and business undertakings and incorporate a corporation or acquire shares in a corporation for that purpose;

(g) to establish commissions to

(i) operate services of the local government,

(ii) undertake operation and enforcement in relation to the local government's exercise of its regulatory authority, and

(iii) manage property or an interest in property held by the local government.

(2) In exercising its powers under subsection (1), a local government may establish any terms and conditions it considers appropriate.

(3) The powers of a local government under subsection (1) may be exercised outside the boundaries of the municipality or regional district.

Division 3 — Agreements

Disclosure of information relating to agreements

177 (1) This section applies if an agreement is proposed or made in relation to a matter that

(a) requires the assent of the electors, or

(b) requires the local government to provide a counter petition opportunity.

(2) To the extent that they can be disclosed under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, the local government must make available for public inspection

(a) the agreement, and

(b) all records relating to the agreement that are in the custody or under the control of the local government.

(3) The records referred to in subsection (2) must remain available for public inspection for at least the period

(a) from the time notice of other voting is given until general voting day for other voting, or

(b) from the time notice of the counter petition opportunity is given until the day on which the deadline for submitting signed counter petition forms passes.

(4) Notices under

(a) section 164 [notice of other voting], or

(b) section 172.4 [notice of counter petition opportunity]

in relation to the agreement must state that the agreement and the records relating to it are available for public inspection in the local government offices during their regular office hours.

Requirements for electors' assent or counter petition opportunities

178 (1) If an agreement is proposed or made in relation to one or more matters referred to in section 177 (1), instead of seeking assent or providing a counter petition opportunity in relation to the matters, the local government may

(a) seek the assent of the electors, or

(b) provide a counter petition opportunity

in relation to the agreement as a whole.

(2) Section 177 applies to an agreement that is dealt with under subsection (1) of this section.

Amendment of agreements

179 If an agreement is in relation to a matter that requires the local government to obtain the assent of the electors or provide a counter petition opportunity, the requirement also applies to an amendment to the agreement in relation to that matter.

Approval for out-of-Province and out-of-country agreements with public authorities

180 (1) An agreement between a local government and a public authority in another province respecting the provision and operation of works and services has no effect unless it is approved by the minister.

(2) An agreement between a local government and a public authority in another country respecting the provision and operation of works and services has no effect unless it is approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

Division 4 — Assistance

Definition of "assistance"

181 For the purposes of section 176 (1) (c) [corporate powers — assistance] and this Division, "assistance" means providing a grant, benefit, advantage or other form of assistance, including

(a) an exemption from a tax, fee or charge, and

(b) the forms of assistance referred to in section 185 (1) [publication of intention to provide certain kinds of assistance].

Prohibition against assistance to business

182 As a limitation on section 176 (1) (c), a local government must not provide assistance to an industrial, commercial or business undertaking.

Exception for assistance under partnering agreements

183 Despite section 182 and in addition to the power under section 176 (1) (c), a local government may provide assistance under a partnering agreement.

Exception for heritage conservation purposes

183.1 (1) A local government may provide assistance for one or more of the following purposes:

(a) acquiring, conserving and developing heritage property and other heritage resources;

(b) gaining knowledge about the community's history and heritage;

(c) increasing public awareness, understanding and appreciation of the community's history and heritage;

(d) any other activities the local government considers necessary or desirable with respect to the conservation of heritage property and other heritage resources.

(2) A local government may, by an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the votes cast, provide assistance for the conservation of any of the following property:

(a) property that is protected heritage property;

(b) property that is subject to a heritage revitalization agreement under section 966;

(c) property that is subject to a covenant under section 219 of the Land Title Act that relates to the conservation of heritage property.

(3) The powers under this section are in addition to the power under section 176 (1) (c) [corporate powers — assistance] and apply despite section 182 [prohibition against assistance to business].

Limitation on assistance by means of tax exemption

184 As limitations on sections 176 (1) (c) and 183,

(a) a council may only provide a property tax exemption in accordance with Division 1 of Part 10 [Assessment and Taxation — Exemptions], and

(b) a board may only provide a property tax exemption in accordance with Division 4.4 of Part 24 [Regional Districts — Tax Rates and Exemptions].

Publication of intention to provide certain kinds of assistance

185 (1) A local government must publish in a newspaper its intention to provide any of the following assistance:

(a) disposing of land or improvements, or any interest or right in or with respect to them, for less than market value;

(b) lending money;

(c) guaranteeing repayment of borrowing or providing security for borrowing;

(d) assistance under a partnering agreement.

(2) The notice must be published before the assistance is provided and must include

(a) the intended recipient of the assistance, and

(b) the nature, term and extent of the proposed assistance.

Division 5 — Disposing of Land and Improvements

Disposition of land and improvements

186 (1) If a local government intends to dispose of land or improvements, it must make the land or improvements available to the public for acquisition.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the disposition is

(a) to a not for profit corporation,

(b) to a public authority,

(c) to a person who, as part of the consideration for the disposition, will exchange land or an improvement with the local government,

(d) to a person under a partnering agreement that has been the subject of a process involving the solicitation of competitive proposals, or

(e) a disposition of land to an owner of adjoining land for the purpose of consolidating the lands.

Notice of proposed disposition

187 (1) A local government intending to dispose of land or improvements must publish notice of its intention in a newspaper in accordance with subsection (2) or (3), as applicable.

(2) If the disposition is a disposition referred to in section 186 (2), the notice must include

(a) a description of the land or improvements,

(a.1) the person or public authority who is to acquire the property under the proposed disposition,

(b) the nature and, if applicable, the term of the proposed disposition, and

(c) the consideration to be received by the local government for the disposition.

(3) For all other dispositions, the notice must include

(a) a description of the land or improvements,

(b) the nature and, if applicable, the term of the proposed disposition, and

(c) the process by which the land or improvements may be acquired.

Use of money from sale of land or improvements

188 (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3),

(a) all money received by a municipality from the sale of land or improvements must be placed to the credit of a special fund under Part 13 [Special Funds], and

(b) all money received by a regional district from the sale of land or improvements must be placed to the credit of a special fund under section 826 [special funds].

(2) If, after money is received under subsection (1), a debt incurred by the municipality or regional district for the purchase or management of the land or improvements remains, there must be set aside all or part of the proceeds of the disposition, as required to repay the debt as it matures together with interest.

(3) Except as required by subsection (2), in the case of a sale of park land, the proceeds of the disposition must be placed to the credit of a reserve fund under Part 13 established for the purpose of acquiring park lands.

Disposal of assets acquired with Provincial grants

189 (1) As a limitation on section 176 (1) (d) [corporate powers — property], before disposing of land, improvements or works acquired or constructed by or for a local government in whole or in part with a Provincial grant that was provided for that purpose, a local government must notify the inspector of the disposition unless

(a) the first payment of all or part of the grant was provided at least 20 years before the intended disposal and the local government no longer receives grant payments with respect to that property, or

(b) the land, improvement or work will be used for the public purpose for which it was acquired or constructed for at least 20 years after the date of the first payment of all or part of the grant.

(2) Subject to regulations under subsection (5), within 30 days after receiving notice under subsection (1), the inspector may, by notice in writing, require the local government to repay all or part of the Provincial grants paid to the local government with respect to the property, on the terms specified in the notice.

(3) This section applies in relation to grants made before or after this section comes into force.

(4) The local government may appeal a decision of the inspector and, for this purpose, section 335.5 [appeal from an inspector's decision] applies.

(5) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations for the purposes of this section as follows:

(a) respecting the matters or information to be included in the local government's notification to the inspector;

(b) prescribing the conditions under which a grant becomes repayable under this section, which may be different for different classes of grants, properties and dispositions;

(c) respecting the means and basis for calculating the whole or part of the Provincial grant that is repayable, which may be different for different classes of grants, properties and dispositions;

(d) specifying the circumstances in which the inspector may take more than 30 days to issue a notice under subsection (2).

Disposal of utilities and water and sewer systems

190 (1) As a limitation on section 176 (1) (d) [corporate powers — property], the following works may only be disposed of in accordance with this section:

(a) works for the supply, treatment, conveyance, storage and distribution of water;

(b) works for the collection, conveyance, treatment and disposal of sewage;

(c) works for the supply and distribution of gas or electrical energy;

(d) works for a transportation system, telephone system, closed circuit television system or television rebroadcasting system.

(2) The works may only be disposed of if

(a) the works are no longer required for the purpose described,

(b) the works are disposed of to another local government in the same regional district,

(c) in the case of works referred to in subsection (1) (a) or (b) that are used by the local government to provide a water or sewer service,

(i) before the disposition occurs there is in effect an agreement under which the water or sewer service will continue for a period specified in the agreement, and

(ii) the intended disposition receives the assent of the electors, or

(d) in the case of works not referred to in paragraph (c), the local government has provided a counter petition opportunity in relation to the proposed disposition.

(3) For the purposes of subsection (2) (c) (ii),

(a) the notice under section 164 [notice of other voting] must include a description of the agreement referred to in subsection (2) (c) (i), and

(b) section 177 [disclosure of information relating to agreements] applies to that agreement.

Division 6 — Delegation of Local Government Authority

Limitations on delegation authority

191 (1) As a limitation on section 176 (1) (e) [corporate powers — delegation], a local government may not delegate the following:

(a) the making of a bylaw;

(b) a power or duty that is only exercisable by bylaw;

(c) a power or duty to appoint, suspend or terminate a local government officer;

(d) a power or duty established by an enactment that the local government hear an appeal or reconsider an action, decision or other matter;

(e) a power or duty established by this or any other Act that the local government give its approval or consent to, recommendations on, or acceptance of an action, decision or other matter.

(2) The authority under section 176 (1) (e) does not include authority to delegate to a corporation incorporated by the local government or to a corporation in which the local government acquires shares.

How delegation must occur

192 (1) Subject to section 193, a local government may only delegate a power, duty or function by bylaw adopted by an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the votes cast.

(2) A local government may, by bylaw adopted by a majority of votes cast, amend or repeal a bylaw referred to in subsection (1) to reduce or revoke the delegation.

Delegation of hearings

193 (1) If a local government is required by law or authorized by an enactment to hold a hearing in relation to a bylaw, action or other matter, the holding of the hearing may only be delegated, either specifically, by class of hearings or generally,

(a) in the case of a council, to one or more council members, and

(b) in the case of a board, to one or more directors.

(2) As an exception to section 192 (1), a local government may delegate the holding of a hearing by bylaw or resolution adopted by a majority of votes cast.

(3) If a hearing in relation to a matter is delegated under subsection (1), a delegation of the power to make the local government decision in relation to the same matter may only be delegated to the person or persons to whom the holding of the hearing was delegated.

(4) If the holding of a hearing is delegated under subsection (1) and the power to make the local government decision in relation to the same matter is not delegated under subsection (3), the local government must not make the decision until the delegate reports to the local government, either orally or in writing, the views expressed at the hearing.

(5) This section does not authorize the delegation of the holding of a hearing referred to in section 191 (1) (d) [appeals and reconsiderations].

(6) For certainty, if a delegation has been made in relation to hearings, the local government may exercise its authority under subsection (1) to change that delegation to a different delegation in relation to a specific hearing.

Reconsideration of delegate's decisions

194 (1) If

(a) a local government delegates a power to make a decision, and

(b) in relation to that delegation, an enactment establishes a right to have a delegated decision reconsidered by the local government,

the local government must, by bylaw, establish procedures for such a reconsideration, including how a person may apply for the reconsideration.

(2) In undertaking a reconsideration referred to in subsection (1), a local government has the same authority as that conferred on the delegate.

Division 7 — Incorporation of Corporations

Incorporation of corporations

195 A local government must not incorporate a corporation or acquire shares in a corporation without first receiving the approval of the inspector.

Part 5.1 — Local Government Officers and Employees

Division 1 — Officer Positions

Officer positions

196 (1) A local government,

(a) must, by bylaw, establish officer positions in relation to the duties under sections 198 [corporate administration] and 199 [financial administration], with titles it considers appropriate,

(b) may, by bylaw, establish other officer positions for its municipality or regional district, with titles it considers appropriate, and

(c) may, by bylaw or resolution, assign powers, duties and functions to those officer positions.

(2) For certainty,

(a) a local government may assign to an officer position powers, duties and functions in addition to those required or permitted to be assigned by this Act or another enactment, and

(b) the same person may be appointed to 2 or more officer positions.

Chief administrative officer

197 One of the officer positions established under section 196 may be assigned the chief administrative responsibility, which includes the following powers, duties and functions:

(a) overall management of the administrative operations of the municipality or regional district;

(b) ensuring that the policies and directions of the local government are implemented;

(c) advising and informing the local government on the operation and affairs of the municipality or regional district.

Corporate administration

198 One of the officer positions established under section 196 must be assigned the responsibility of corporate administration, which includes the following powers, duties and functions:

(a) ensuring that accurate minutes of the meetings of the local government and its committees are prepared and that the minutes, bylaws and other records of the business of the local government and its committees are maintained and kept safe;

(b) ensuring that access is provided to records of the local government and its committees, as required by law or authorized by the local government;

(c) certifying copies of bylaws and other documents, as required or requested;

(d) administering oaths and taking affirmations, declarations and affidavits required to be taken under this or any other Act in relation to local government matters;

(e) accepting, on behalf of the local government, municipality or regional district, notices and documents that are required or permitted to be given, served on, filed with or otherwise provided to the local government, municipality or regional district;

(f) keeping the corporate seal, if any, and having it affixed to documents as required.

Financial administration

199 One of the officer positions established under section 196 must be assigned the responsibility of financial administration, which includes the following powers, duties and functions:

(a) receiving all money paid to the municipality or regional district;

(b) ensuring the keeping of all funds and securities of the municipality or regional district;

(c) expending and disbursing money in the manner authorized by the local government;

(d) investing funds, until required, in investments referred to in section 336 [investment of municipal funds];

(e) ensuring that accurate records and full accounts of the financial affairs of the municipality or regional district are prepared, maintained and kept safe;

(f) compiling and supplying information on the financial affairs of the municipality or regional district required by the inspector.

Division 2 — Officers and Employees Generally

Appointment of officers and employees

200 (1) Without limiting section 176 [corporate powers], a local government may

(a) provide for the appointment of officers and other employees for its municipality or regional district, and

(b) subject to the Labour Relations Code and the Employment Standards Act, establish the terms and conditions of their employment, including terms and conditions respecting their remuneration, benefits, expenses, hours of work and manner of appointment, promotion, discipline and dismissal.

(2) In the event of a conflict between terms and conditions of employment established by bylaw, resolution or policy and those established by contract of employment or collective agreement, the contract or agreement prevails.

Oath of office for officers

201 Before taking on the duties of office, a person appointed to an officer position for a municipality or regional district must swear or affirm an oath of office in the form prescribed by regulation or established by local government bylaw.

Termination of officer

202 Subject to a contract of employment, the appointment of a local government officer may be terminated by the local government as follows:

(a) on reasonable notice, if the termination is approved by an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the votes cast;

(b) without notice, for cause, if the termination is approved by a majority of the votes cast.

Employers' organization

203 A local government may, by an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the votes cast, provide for the inclusion of its municipality or regional district in an employers' organization under the Labour Relations Code.

Division 3 — Certification of Senior Officials

Board of examiners

204 (1) There is to be a board of examiners for the purposes of this Division, composed of 3 members appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council on the recommendation of the minister, of whom

(a) one must be nominated by the Union of British Columbia Municipalities,

(b) one must be nominated by the Municipal Officers' Association of British Columbia, and

(c) one must be nominated by the minister.

(2) The members of the board hold office for a term of 3 years or until their successors are appointed.

(3) If a vacancy occurs because of the death or resignation of a member, the member's successor must be nominated and appointed in the same manner as the member originally nominated and appointed.

(4) The members of the board must not receive remuneration for their services, but must be paid by the minister the amount of their travelling and other personal expenses necessarily incurred by them in the discharge of their official duties.

(5) A member of the board may be nominated and reappointed for further terms.

Powers of board

205 (1) The board may do one or more of the following:

(a) establish qualifications and standards for municipal, regional district or improvement district employment according to office and grades;

(b) grant certificates according to grades and skill to persons possessing the qualifications and meeting the standards;

(c) set and hold examinations for, or pass on the credentials of, a person who is a candidate for a certificate;

(d) cancel a certificate on proof of dishonesty or gross negligence on the part of the holder.

(2) The powers and duties of the board must be exercised and performed in accordance with any applicable regulations made by the board.

(3) The records of the board and the administrative duties in connection with them are the responsibility of the inspector.

Board may make regulations

206 With the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council on the recommendation of the minister, the board may make regulations respecting

(a) the exercise and performance of its powers and duties,

(b) examinations and certificates, and

(c) any other matter within the jurisdiction of the board.

Part 5.2 — Municipal Councils and Their Proceedings

Division 1 — Council Members

Size of council

207 (1) Except as established under subsection (2) or by the effect of section 209 [term of office for council members], the council size for municipalities must be as follows:

(a) for a city or district having a population of more than 50 000, the council is to consist of a mayor and 8 councillors;

(b) for a city or district having a population of 50 000 or less, the council is to consist of a mayor and 6 councillors;

(c) for a town or village, the council is to consist of a mayor and 4 councillors.

(2) The council of a city, district or town may, by bylaw, establish the number of council members as a mayor and 4, 6, 8 or 10 councillors.

(3) A bylaw under subsection (2) must provide for an uninterrupted transition from the previous council.

(4) A bylaw under subsection (2) that would reduce the number of council members must not be adopted unless it receives the assent of the electors.

Quorum of council

208 (1) Except as established by a temporary order under section 37 (6) (a) [minister's order if local government reduced to less than a quorum], the quorum for a council is as follows:

Number of council members

Quorum

5 members............................

3

7 members............................

4

9 members............................

5

11 members...........................

6

(2) The acts done by a quorum of council are not invalid by reason only that the council is not at the time composed of the required number of council members under this Act.

Term of office for council members

209 (1) The term of office for a mayor elected at a general local election

(a) begins on the first Monday after December 1 following the election or when the person takes office in accordance with section 210 (3), whichever is later, and

(b) ends immediately before the first Monday after December 1 in the year of the next general local election or when the mayor's successor takes office, whichever is later.

(2) The term of office for a councillor elected at a general local election

(a) begins on the first Monday after December 1 following the election or when the person takes office in accordance with section 210 (3), and

(b) ends immediately before the first Monday after December 1 in the year of the next general local election or when a sufficient number of council members have taken office to make up a quorum, whichever is later.

Oath of office for council members

210 (1) A person elected or appointed to office on a council must make a prescribed oath of office, by oath or solemn affirmation, within the following applicable time limit:

(a) in the case of a person elected by acclamation, within 50 days after the date set for general voting day had an election by voting been required;

(b) in the case of a person elected by voting, within 45 days after the declaration of the results of the election;

(c) in the case of a person appointed to office, within 45 days after the effective date of the appointment.

(2) The oath must be made before a judge of the Court of Appeal, Supreme Court or Provincial Court, a justice of the peace or the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration], and the person making the oath must obtain the completed oath or a certificate of it from the person administering it.

(3) A person takes office on a council

(a) at the time the term of office begins if, at this time, the person produces or has produced the completed oath or certificate to the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration], or

(b) at any later time that the person produces the completed oath or certificate to that officer.

(4) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by regulation, establish one or more alternative oaths of office for the purposes of this section, which may be different for different types of office.

(5) A person taking office on a council may also make an oath of allegiance.

(6) Once a council member takes office, the member is entitled to hold that office through its term and to vote and otherwise act in the office during that time unless the member resigns or becomes disqualified.

Disqualification from office for failure to make oath or attend meetings

211 (1) If a person elected or appointed to office on a council does not make the required oath under section 210 within the time limit set by that section, the office is deemed to be vacant and the person is disqualified from taking and holding office on a local government or on the council of the City of Vancouver until the next general local election.

(2) If a council member is continuously absent from council meetings for a period of 60 consecutive days or 4 consecutive regularly scheduled council meetings, whichever is the longer time period, unless the absence is because of illness or with the leave of the council, the office of the member is deemed to be vacant and the person who held the office is disqualified from holding office on a local government or on the council of the City of Vancouver until the next general local election.

Resignation from office

212 (1) A council member may resign from office only by delivering a written resignation to the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration].

(2) A resignation becomes effective when it is received by the municipal officer, even if a later date is set out in the resignation, and may not be revoked after the time it is received.

(3) The municipal officer must notify the council of a resignation at its next meeting after the resignation is received or, if there are no other council members, the municipal officer must notify the minister.

Application to court to declare council member disqualified

213 (1) An application to the Supreme Court for a declaration that a council member is disqualified from holding office and that the office is vacant may be made in accordance with this section.

(2) Except as provided in this section, Division 15 of Part 3 [Declaration of Invalid Election], other than section 143 (7) [time for hearing application], applies in relation to an application under this section.

(3) An application may only be made by at least 4 electors of the municipality.

(4) An application may be made at any time during the challenged person's term of office, but must be made within 30 days after the alleged basis of the disqualification comes to the attention of any of the persons making the application.

(5) Within 7 days after the petition commencing an application is filed, it must be served on the person whose right to hold office is being challenged and on the municipality.

(6) On the hearing of an application, the court may

(a) declare that the person is confirmed as qualified to hold office, or

(b) declare that the person is not qualified to hold office and that the office is vacant.

Resolution declaring council member disqualified

214 (1) If the council considers that one of its members is disqualified from holding office, the council may adopt a resolution declaring that the office is vacant.

(2) Before taking action under subsection (1), the council must notify the person affected of the proposed action.

(3) Unless an application to the Supreme Court is made under subsection (4), an office declared vacant under subsection (1) becomes vacant 6 days after the resolution is adopted.

(4) A person whose office is declared vacant under subsection (1) may apply to the Supreme Court for a determination of whether the person is qualified to hold the office, but the application must be commenced within 5 days after the resolution is adopted.

(5) Within 7 days after the petition commencing an application under subsection (4) is filed, it must be served on the municipality.

(6) On the hearing of an application under subsection (4), the court may

(a) declare that the person is confirmed as qualified to hold office, or

(b) declare that the person is not qualified to hold office and that the office is vacant.

(7) Section 147 [status of an elected candidate] applies in relation to an application under subsection (4) of this section.

Sections Repealed

215 to 217 [Repealed 1999-37-56.]

Division 2 — Mayor

Powers and duties of mayor

218 (1) The mayor is the head and chief executive officer of the municipality.

(2) In addition to the mayor's powers and duties as a council member, the mayor has the following duties:

(a) to see that the law for the improvement and good government of the municipality is carried out;

(b) to communicate information to the council and to recommend bylaws, resolutions and measures that, in the mayor's opinion, may assist the peace, order and good government of the municipality in relation to the powers conferred on the council by an enactment;

(c) [Repealed 2000-7-21.]

(d) to inspect and direct the conduct of officers and employees, to direct the management of municipal business and affairs and, if considered necessary, to suspend an officer or employee;

(e) so far as the mayor's power extends, to see that negligence, carelessness and violation of duty by an officer or employee is prosecuted and punished.

(3) Every suspension of an officer or employee by the mayor under this section must be reported to the council at its next sitting, and the council may

(a) reinstate the officer or employee,

(b) confirm the suspension,

(c) confirm and extend the suspension, or

(d) dismiss the officer or employee.

(4) The powers and duties set out in subsections (2) (d) and (3) are subject to sections 200 [appointment of officers and employees] and 202 [termination of officer].

Mayor may return bylaw for reconsideration by council

219 (1) At any time within one month after a bylaw, resolution or proceeding of the council is adopted, the mayor may return it for reconsideration if it has not

(a) had the assent of the electors,

(b) been reconsidered by the council under subsection (3), or

(c) been acted on by an officer, employee or agent of the municipality.

(2) The mayor may give reasons for returning a matter to the council and the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration] must record in the minutes the mayor's reasons, suggestions or amendments.

(3) As soon as convenient, the council must consider the mayor's reasons and either reaffirm or reject the bylaw, resolution or proceeding.

(4) If a bylaw, resolution or proceeding is rejected, it

(a) is deemed to be repealed and is of no effect, and

(b) must not be reintroduced to the council for 6 months except with the unanimous consent of the council.

(5) The conditions that applied to the adoption of the original bylaw, resolution or proceeding apply to its rejection.

Acting mayor and deputy mayor

220 (1) A council may appoint one of its members to be deputy mayor and one of its members to be acting mayor.

(2) If the office of mayor becomes vacant, the council must appoint a member to be acting mayor, and the acting mayor is to continue in office until another mayor is elected or appointed.

(3) During the absence, illness or other disability of the mayor, the acting mayor has all the powers of and is subject to the same rules as the mayor.

Intermunicipal questions

221 Except where otherwise provided, all questions arising between municipalities must be decided by the mayors of the municipalities or, if they cannot agree, by the Supreme Court, whose decision is final.

Division 3 — Council Meetings

First council meeting after general local election

222 (1) Following a general local election, the first council meeting must be on the first Monday after December 1 in the year of the election.

(2) If a quorum of council members elected at the general local election has not taken office by the time referred to in subsection (1), the first council meeting must be called by the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration] and held as soon as reasonably possible after a quorum has taken office.

Regular and special council meetings

222.1 (1) After its first meeting under section 222, a council must meet

(a) regularly in accordance with its bylaw under section 235 [procedure bylaw], and

(b) as it decides and as provided in this Act.

(2) For the purposes of this Act, a special council meeting is a council meeting other than a statutory, regular or adjourned meeting.

(3) If permitted under subsection (4), a council meeting may be conducted by means of electronic or other communications facilities.

(4) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations permitting meetings under subsection (3) and prescribing conditions, limits and requirements respecting such meetings.

Notice of special meeting

223 (1) A notice of the day, hour and place of a special council meeting must be given at least 24 hours before the time of meeting, by

(a) posting a copy of the notice at the regular council meeting place, and

(b) leaving one copy for each council member at the place to which the member has directed notices to be sent.

(2) The notice must be signed by the mayor or the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration].

(3) Notice of a special council meeting may be waived by unanimous vote of all council members.

Council members may request special meeting

224 (1) Two or more council members may, in writing, request the mayor to call a special council meeting.

(2) Two or more council members may call a special council meeting if

(a) within 24 hours after receiving a request under subsection (1), the mayor refuses or neglects to arrange for the special council meeting to be held within 7 days after receiving the request, or

(b) the mayor is absent.

(3) If a special council meeting is called under subsection (2), the council members calling the meeting must sign the notice under section 223.

Sections Repealed

225 and 226 [Repealed 1999-37-58.]

Mayor to preside at council meetings

227 (1) The mayor, if present, must preside at council meetings.

(2) If the mayor, deputy mayor and the acting mayor are absent from a council meeting,

(a) the members present must choose a member to preside, and

(b) the presiding member has, for that purpose, all the powers of and is subject to the same rules as the mayor.

(3) Any council member may preside in committee of the whole.

Points of order

228 The mayor or the member presiding at a council meeting must preserve order and decide points of order that may arise, subject to an appeal to the other council members present.

Appeal from decision of mayor or member presiding

229 (1) On an appeal by a council member from a decision of the mayor or the member presiding at a council meeting, the question as to whether the chair is to be sustained must be immediately put by the mayor or presiding member and decided without debate.

(2) The mayor or presiding member must be governed by the vote of the majority of the other council members present.

(3) If the votes are equal, the question passes in the affirmative.

(4) The names of the council members voting for or against the question must be recorded in the minutes.

(5) If the mayor or presiding member refuses to put the question under subsection (1),

(a) the council must immediately appoint another member to preside temporarily,

(b) that other member must proceed in accordance with subsection (1), and

(c) a resolution or motion carried under this subsection is as binding as if carried under subsection (1).

Voting at council meetings

230 (1) This section applies to council members in relation to

(a) council meetings, and

(b) meetings of committees referred to in section 235 (1) (b) [standing, select and other council committees].

(2) A council member present at the meeting at the time of the vote who abstains from voting is deemed to have voted in the affirmative.

(3) If the votes of the council members present at the meeting at the time of the vote are equal for and against a question, the question is negatived and the presiding member must declare this result.

Council member declaration if not entitled to vote

231 (1) This section applies to council members in relation to

(a) council meetings,

(b) meetings of committees referred to in section 235 (1) (b) [standing, select and other council committees], and

(c) meetings of bodies that are subject to section 242.7 [application to other municipal bodies].

(2) If a council member attending a meeting considers that he or she is not entitled to

(a) participate in the discussion of a matter, or

(b) vote on a question in respect of a matter

because the member has a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in the matter or for any other reason, the member must declare this and state the general nature of why the member considers this to be the case.

(3) After making the declaration, the member

(a) must not take part in the discussion of the matter and is not entitled to vote on any question in respect of the matter,

(b) must immediately leave the meeting or that part of the meeting during which the matter is under consideration, and

(c) must not attempt in any way, whether before, during or after the meeting, to influence the voting on any question in respect of the matter.

(4) When the declaration is made,

(a) the person recording the minutes of the meeting must record the member's declaration, the reasons given for it and the times of the member's departure from the meeting room and, if applicable, of the member's return, and

(b) the person presiding at the meeting must ensure that the member is not present at the meeting at the time of any vote on the matter.

(5) Whether or not a declaration is made under subsection (2), if a council member has a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in a matter, the member must not

(a) participate in the discussion of the matter,

(b) vote on a question in respect of the matter, or

(c) attempt in any way, whether before, during or after the meeting, to influence the voting on any question in respect of the matter.

(6) Subsection (5) does not apply

(a) if the pecuniary interest of the council member is a pecuniary interest in common with electors of the municipality generally,

(b) if the matter relates to remuneration or expenses payable to one or more council members in relation to their duties as council members, or

(c) if the pecuniary interest is so remote or insignificant that it cannot reasonably be regarded as likely to influence the member in relation to the matter.

(7) A person who contravenes subsection (5) is disqualified from continuing to hold office as a council member unless the contravention was done inadvertently or because of an error in judgment made in good faith.

(8) If otherwise qualified, a person disqualified under subsection (7) is qualified to be nominated and elected in the by-election to fill the vacancy created by this disqualification and, if elected, is qualified to hold the office.

(9) The council may apply to the Supreme Court for an order under subsection (10) if, as a result of subsection (2), the number of council members who may discuss and vote on a matter falls below

(a) the quorum for the council, or

(b) the number of council members required to adopt the applicable bylaw or resolution.

(9.1) An application under subsection (9) may be made without notice to any other person.

(10) On an application under subsection (9), the court may

(a) order that all or specified council members may discuss and vote on the matter, despite the other provisions of this section, and

(b) make the authority under paragraph (a) subject to any conditions and directions the court considers appropriate.

Division 4 — Council Proceedings

Exercise of powers by bylaw or resolution

232 (1) If an enactment provides that a council is required or empowered to exercise a power by bylaw, that power may only be exercised by bylaw.

(2) Except as restricted by subsection (1), the powers of a council may be exercised by resolution or bylaw.

(3) An act or proceeding of a council is not valid unless it is authorized or adopted by bylaw or resolution at a council meeting.

General rule that matters be decided by majority of members present

233 Unless otherwise provided, all acts to be done by the council, and all other questions, including adjournment, that may come before the council must be done and decided by a majority of the council members present at a meeting.

Requirement for 2/3 majority

234 A requirement in this Act for an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of all members of a council means an affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the number of members of which the council consists under this Act.

Procedure bylaw

235 (1) The council must, by bylaw, do the following:

(a) establish the procedures that are to be followed for the conduct of its business, including the manner by which resolutions may be passed and, in accordance with section 258 [establishment of procedures for adopting bylaws], by which bylaws may be adopted;

(b) establish the procedures that are to be followed in conducting meetings of

(i) select and standing committees of council, and

(ii) any other committee composed solely of council members acting in that capacity;

(c) establish the time and place of regular meetings of council;

(d) require advance public notice respecting the time, place and date of council and committee meetings and establish the procedures for giving that notice.

(2) A bylaw under this section must not be altered except by a bylaw passed at a regular council meeting in accordance with a notice in writing given and openly announced at an earlier regular meeting.

Minutes of council meetings

236 (1) Minutes of council meetings must be

(a) legibly recorded,

(b) certified as correct by the designated municipal officer,

(c) signed by the mayor or other member presiding at the meeting or at the next meeting at which they are adopted, and

(d) open for public inspection at the municipal hall during its regular office hours.

(2) Subsection (1) (d) does not apply to minutes of that part of a council meeting from which persons were excluded under section 242.2 [closed meetings].

Minutes of council committee meetings

237 Minutes of a committee referred to in section 235 (1) (b) [standing, select and other council committees] must be

(a) legibly recorded,

(b) signed by the chair or member presiding at the meeting, and

(c) open for public inspection as provided for council minutes under section 236.

Appointment of select committees

238 (1) A council may appoint a select committee to consider or inquire into any matter and to report its findings and opinion to the council.

(2) Subject to subsection (3), persons who are not council members may be appointed to a select committee.

(3) At least one member of a select committee must be a council member.

Appointment of standing committees

239 (1) The mayor may establish standing committees for matters the mayor considers would be better dealt with by committee and may appoint persons to those committees.

(2) Subject to subsection (3), persons who are not council members may be appointed to a standing committee.

(3) At least half of the members of a standing committee must be council members.

Witnesses at council or committee meetings

240 (1) A council, a standing committee or a select committee

(a) has power, under the signature of the mayor, to summon witnesses for examination on oath for matters about the administration of the municipality, and

(b) has the same power to enforce the attendance of witnesses and compel them to give evidence as is vested in a court of law in civil cases.

(2) A member of council or of a standing or select committee or the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration] may administer the oath to a witness.

(3) A witness may be examined, cross examined and re-examined according to the rules and practice of the Supreme Court in civil cases.

Petitions to council

241 (1) This section applies to petitions to council, other than counter petitions under Division 5 of Part 4 [Other Voting — Counter Petition Opportunities].

(2) A petition to a council must include the full name and residential address of each petitioner.

(3) A person may not withdraw their name from the petition or add a name to the petition

(a) if no time has been set under this Act for submission of the petition, after the petition has been certified as sufficient, and

(b) in other cases, after the time set for submission of the petition.

(4) Except as otherwise provided, the sufficiency and validity of a petition to a council must be determined by the municipal officer assigned responsibility under section 198 [corporate administration], who must certify this determination.

(5) A determination under subsection (4) is final and conclusive.

Section Repealed

242 [Repealed 2000-7-28.]

Division 4.1 — Public Access to Municipal Meetings

General rule: meetings must be open to the public

242.1 Subject to section 242.2 [closed meetings], a council meeting must be open to the public.

Meetings that may or must be closed

242.2 (1) A part of a council meeting may be closed to the public if the subject matter being considered relates to one or more of the following:

(a) personal information about an identifiable individual who holds or is being considered for a position as an officer, employee or agent of the municipality or another position appointed by the municipality;

(b) personal information about an identifiable individual who is being considered for a municipal award or honour, or who has offered to provide a gift to the municipality on condition of anonymity;

(c) labour relations or employee negotiations;

(d) the security of property of the municipality;

(e) the acquisition, disposition or expropriation of land or improvements, if the council considers that disclosure might reasonably be expected to harm the interests of the municipality;

(f) law enforcement, if the council considers that disclosure might reasonably be expected to harm the conduct of an investigation under or enforcement of an Act, regulation or bylaw;

(g) consideration of whether paragraph (e) or (f) applies in relation to a matter;

(h) litigation or potential litigation affecting the municipality;

(i) the receiving of advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose;

(j) information that is prohibited from disclosure under section 21 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act;

(k) a matter that, under another enactment, is such that the public may be excluded from the meeting;

(l) a matter prescribed by regulation under section 242.8.

(2) A part of a council meeting must be closed to the public if the subject matter relates to one or more of the following:

(a) a request under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act if the council is designated as head of the local public body for the purposes of that Act in relation to the matter;

(b) a matter that, under another enactment, is such that the public must be excluded from the meeting.

(3) If the only subject matter being considered at a council meeting is one or more matters referred to in subsection (1) or (2), the applicable subsection applies to the entire meeting.

Resolution required before meeting closed

242.3 Before a meeting or part of a meeting is closed to the public, the council must state, by resolution,

(a) the fact that the meeting is to be closed, and

(b) the basis under section 242.2 on which the meeting is to be closed.

No bylaw votes in a closed meeting

242.4 A council must not vote on the reading or adoption of a bylaw when its meeting is closed to the public.

Expulsion from meeting for improper conduct

242.5 If the mayor or other person presiding at a meeting of the council considers that a person is guilty of improper conduct, the person presiding may expel and exclude the other person from the meeting.

Application to council committee meetings

242.6 This Division applies to meetings of committees referred to in section 235 (1) (b) [select, standing and other council committees].

Application to other municipal bodies

242.7 Subject to the regulations under section 242.8, this Division and section 237 [minutes of council committees] apply to meetings of the following:

(a) a body that under this or another Act may exercise the powers of the municipality or council;

(b) a board of variance;

(c) a local court of revision;

(d) an advisory committee, or other advisory body, established by council under this or another Act;

(e) a prescribed body.

Regulations respecting open meetings

242.8 The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations to do one or more of the following:

(a) prescribing a matter for the purposes of section 242.2 (1) (l) [meetings that may be closed];

(b) prescribing a body or class of body for the purposes of section 242.7 (e) [application to other bodies];

(c) in relation to section 242.7, excluding a specified body from the application of this Division or section 237 [minutes of council committees], or both;

(d) modifying any of the provisions of this Division or section 237 [minutes of council committees], or both, in relation to a body that is subject to this Division under section 242.7.

Division 5 — Additional Powers

Persons may be honoured with freedom of the municipality

243 (1) To honour a distinguished person, by unanimous vote of its members, a council may confer freedom of the municipality on that person.

(2) Until the council revokes the honour, a person given freedom of the municipality

(a) is deemed to be an elector of the municipality and is eligible to be registered as such and to vote in an election for mayor or councillor, and

(b) despite any other enactment, if the person is a Canadian citizen, is deemed to be qualified to be nominated, be elected and hold the office of mayor of the municipality.

(3) To honour a distinguished unit of the armed forces of Canada, the United Kingdom or another nation of the Commonwealth, by unanimous vote of its members, a council may confer freedom of the municipality on that unit.

(4) The commanding officer of a unit honoured with freedom of the municipality has by virtue of office the same qualifications and privileges of a person honoured with freedom of the municipality.

Municipal holidays

244 A council may declare that a public holiday is to be observed in the municipality, either on a day named by the council or on a day determined and proclaimed by the mayor.

Referendums to obtain electors' opinion

245 A council may, by bylaw, provide for a referendum to obtain the electors' opinion on a question that affects the municipality and with which the council has power to deal.

Joint exercise of powers with other municipalities

246 (1) A municipality may join with another municipality to exercise a power conferred by this Act.

(2) An agreement under this section is not valid until ratified by a bylaw adopted by each council.

(3) For the purpose of this section,

(a) the powers of a municipality extend beyond the boundaries of the municipality, and

(b) "municipality" includes the City of Vancouver.

Incidental powers

247 The council has all necessary power to do anything incidental or conducive to the exercise or performance of its powers, duties and functions.

Further powers in relation to municipal assets

248 In addition to the powers of a council under this Act, the minister may confer on the council further powers to manage and dispose of municipal assets that the minister considers necessary or advisable.

Further powers for public good

249 On request by a council, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may, to the extent not inconsistent with the purposes of this or any other Act, confer further powers on the council necessary to

(a) preserve and promote the peace, order and good government of the muni-cipality and the health, safety, morality and welfare of its citizens, and

(b) provide for protection of persons and property.

Emergency powers

250 If the powers conferred on a council are inadequate to deal with an emergency that is not an emergency within the meaning of the Emergency Program Act, the council may, by bylaw adopted by a vote of at least 2/3 of the council members, declare that an emergency exists and exercise powers necessary to deal effectively with the emergency.

Additional powers and exceptions may be granted to municipalities

251 (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by regulation, do one or more of the following in relation to a specified municipality or a described class of municipalities:

(a) grant a power to the municipality or class;

(b) provide an exception to or a modification of a requirement established by an enactment;

(c) establish any terms and conditions the Lieutenant Governor in Council considers appropriate regarding

(i) the grant of a power under paragraph (a) or the exercise of it, or

(ii) an exception or modification under paragraph (b) or the taking of its benefit.

(2) A regulation made under this section must not do any of the following:

(a) confer an authority otherwise available to a municipality, including any power that may be granted or exercised under

section 247 [incidental powers],

section 248 [further powers in relation to municipal assets],

section 249 [further powers for public good], or

section 250 [emergency powers];

(b) override an absolute prohibition contained in an enactment;

(c) confer an authority to impose a new tax;

(d) confer an authority to grant a new tax exemption;

(e) eliminate a requirement for obtaining the assent of the electors;

(f) any other thing prohibited by regulation under subsection (3).

(3) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by regulation, prescribe additional limitations on the authority conferred under this section.

Sections Repealed

252 and 253 [Repealed 1999-37-65.]

Sections Repealed

254 to 256 [Repealed 1999-37-66.]


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