Council infighting prompts special meetings
Infighting has prompted Sudbury city councillors to hold two special meetings over the next few months to address the divisions around the council table.
The decision was made Tuesday night, but only after an argument about whether one of the meetings should be held in private.
Several councillors spoke out last month that ongoing, divisive conflicts between councillors and the mayor are preventing the city from moving forward.
With hopes of remedying the situation, Coun. Joscelyne Landry-Altmann proposed a public meeting in November to go over the status of the city's strategic plan.
She also asked for a private leadership training meeting for councillors in January.
But Mayor Marianne Matichuk feared that kind of closed-door meeting would spark another investigation by Ontario's ombudsman.
In August, Ombudsman André Marin called councillors "un-cooperative and immature."
"So I will call the meeting, but I will not be there due to transparency issues, and I've heard from several councillors that they will not be there," said Matichuk.
But Landry-Altmann disagreed.
"It's very transparent and actually, using the words of the ombudsman, it does pass the test," said Landry-Altmann.
Coun. Ron Dupuis hopes these conflicts can be put to rest.
"This thing about 'he said, she said' and everything else, lets just get a group hug and lets get working," said Dupuis.
After that remark, several councillors did share a hug.
Near the end of Tuesday night's meeting, another councillor suggested a compromise: that the upcoming training session be a public meeting.
Council was unanimous in its decision to invite the public inside the January meeting.