Maple Ridge task force getting open gov’t

Working group will make recommendations on improving public access

  • Apr. 30, 2015 3:00 p.m.

It has asked that Maple Ridge council’s Monday workshop and committee meetings be webcast, so everyone can follow them from home.

Next on the to-do list for the mayor’s open government task force was asking staff to make available to the public details about contracts awarded by the City of Maple Ridge.

Staff are working on a template to allow projects to be identified by bid number, project title, award date and amount of contract.

Once that’s complete, the task force then will turn to the public to get input through the citizens representatives working group.

That group is being chaired by former school trustee Katherine Wagner, who administers the Council Watch Facebook group.

Thirty-two people applied to join the working group, which had its first meeting last week.

A public meeting is expected to follow in order to hear from the public about what type of information from city hall they’d like to access.

The working group then will make recommendations to the mayor’s open government task force, which then could make further suggestions to council.

 

E-cigs bylaw tweak

Maple Ridge is tuning up its new smoking regulation bylaw so there’s no doubt it covers e-cigarettes.

It’s doing so by adding an additional definition to smoking.

A staff report says the existing bylaw covers e-cigarettes, but Fraser Health wants more specific definitions to leave no doubt that they are covered.

A Maple Ridge bylaws report points out that e-cigarettes with nicotine are not allowed to be sold in Canada. However, non-nicotine e-cigarettes are allowed.

The report was heard at council’s committee meeting last week and will go to regular council.

Health officials say e-cigarettes can undermine efforts to limit tobacco smoking while the long-term health effects of e-cigarettes are unknown.

Maple Ridge passed a bylaw in 2013 setting out new distances and restrictions on puffing in public.

The B.C. government has introduced amendments to the Tobacco Control Act to regulate e-cigarettes.

The changes will include requirements for retailers to ensure e-cigarettes are sold only to adults aged 19 and above, and to make it possible to create regulations to ensure that no retail displays are targeted to youth and no retail advertising for e-cigarettes is shown where youth can see it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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