Municipal councils, local boards and their committees meet behind closed doors on occasion to deal with some matters. For example, if a municipality is being sued or if Council is considering purchasing a piece of land or if Council must deal with a labour relations issue then it is appropriate that it be able to do so at a closed meeting. The purpose of such a closed meeting is to receive information or give direction.
Local government in Ontario must be transparent and accountable. To this end, the Province has set the rules for a council, local board or a committee to go into a closed meeting. These rules are found in section 239 of the Municipal Act 2001. They must be strictly followed.
Click here for a listing of the permitted reasons for going into a closed meeting.
If a member of the public has a complaint about a meeting or portion of a meeting being closed, and are unable to relieve their concerns by speaking with a member of council, that person is asked to review the process for a closed meeting investigation, and if necessary, fill out the following closed meeting investigation request form.
These complaints are investigated by the Municipal Investigator, who at this time is Local Authority Services (LAS). Please see the following by-law, for the purposes of providing for closed meeting investigation services By-law 67-2014 and FAQs for more information.