The City of Saskatoon is changing the way it operates to streamline council and committee meetings and expand public input. 

Murray Totland

Saskatoon city manager Murray Totland speaks with media about the proposed changes to the way it operates. (CBC)

The city said the changes will create a better way for the public to bring an issue to council. People will be able to take it to a committee meeting first. 

A regular meeting and a public hearing meeting of council will be held on the same day. The regular meeting takes place in the afternoon and the public hearing meeting follows that evening.

Speakers will only be able to speak to council if the item is placed on the agenda first. 

As well as making it easier for people to participate, recommendations include creating four new committees of council to work with residents to create public policy. These meetings would be held once a month.

"We're recommending we set up standing policy committees, where really, that's where we can engage the public," Saskatoon city manager Murray Totland said. "Councillors can kind of roll up their sleeves to speak and really start digging into some of these tough policy issues that we face as a city."

Growth equals changes

Because the city has grown in the past six years, it is becoming more complex, the city report said. Changes to how city council operates are needed to deal with future growth. 

City administration considered the governance practices of Calgary, Edmonton, Regina and Winnipeg because of their economic importance and proximity to Saskatoon. The city is hoping to implement the changes in May.

This is the first major review of procedures since 1995.