No more snail mail at city hall.
The District of Squamish is streamlining the way it handles citizens’ letters and emails to mayor and council. Changes to the municipality’s correspondence policy include immediately forwarding constituents’ concerns that are operational in nature to district staff and that letters and emails that include direction from council will receive responses signed by the mayor.
Coun. Patricia Heintzman requested that the district require a week’s turnaround for responses to residents’ correspondence. The measure was backed by council.
“Six months later doesn’t work. I want a timeframe,” she said, noting that a week is reasonable.
The policy does state that the mayor makes the final decision on whether a letter or email will be included on council’s agenda package. But that doesn’t mean all the power lies with the mayor, Coun. Doug Race said. If the mayor intentionally tried to keep something from council’s table, councillors would know and have ways of getting it on the agenda, he said.
“We do have that safety valve as a council,” he said.
The policy states how correspondence should be handled, Mayor Rob Kirkham said. The only reason for that directive is to help speed things up, he said.