RFD-3667     Bylaws    Item #   9. a.            
Regular Council Meeting Agenda
Meeting Date: 09/09/2019  
Title: C-1072-19 - Second Reading - Parental Leave for Councillors Bylaw - Frostad
Department: Corporate Services
Where People Choose to Live - A dynamic city with an exceptional quality of life

Request for Decision Summary
The Municipal Government Act was recently amended to empower a municipal council to establish by bylaw parental leave for Councillors prior to, or after, the birth or adoption of a child. Following the 2019 remuneration review, Council adopted the Council Remuneration Task Force's recommendation to have Administration prepare a Parental Leave for Elected Officials Bylaw for Council's consideration. This report outlines the provisions for the proposed parental leave bylaw.

Proposed Motion
 That second reading be given to Bylaw C-1072-19 - Parental Leave for Councillors Bylaw, as amended.
Amendments to the Municipal Government Act were proclaimed into force on October 26, 2017 which allow Alberta municipalities to create a bylaw to establish whether councillors are entitled to take leave prior to or after the birth or adoption of a child. Pursuant to section 144.1(2), if a bylaw is created by a municipality which allows such leave, it must contain provisions regarding the length of the leave and the terms and conditions of the leave entitlement, and address how the municipality will continue to be represented during the periods of leave.

On June 24, 2019, Council adopted the 2019 Council Remuneration Task Force recommendation to direct Administration to bring forward a Parental Leave for Elected Officials Bylaw for Council's review and approval.

The proposed bylaw incorporates the requirements under section 144.1(2) of the Municipal Government Act, as well as the recommendations of the 2019 Council Remuneration Task Force. These elements include:
  1. A defined length of leave and the compensation payable during the leave;
  2. A requirement for prior written notice of the intent to take leave;
  3. A written agreement that outlines the terms of the leave including what tasks or duties, if any, will be performed by the councillor on leave and any tasks or duties assigned to another councillor on behalf of the councillor on leave; and
  4. A requirement to ensure that an alternative representative is appointed to any boards and committees that the Councillor taking parental leave is a member of.
Since first reading was given on July 15, 2019, Administration has incorporated clarification around the provision of benefits during a parental leave. A redline copy of the changes is attached for reference. 
Council may recommend further amendments to the proposed bylaw during second reading.
 A Council Remuneration Task Force comprised of six Spruce Grove electors was established by Council in 2019. This Task Force was given the mandate to review the provision and implementation of parental leave benefits for Councillors.

The Task Force reviewed parental leave bylaws from the Cities of Calgary, Edmonton, Lacombe and Waterloo, discussed options, and provided a recommended draft bylaw for Council's consideration as part of their 2019 Council Remuneration report.
Implementation of a parental leave bylaw will help to remove barriers to participation to the democratic process, and will help ensure a diverse range of candidates are attracted to City Council. 

Bylaw C-1072-19, Amended
Bylaw C-1072-19, Red Line