e-Brief July 24, 2020
Mark your Calendars for CAMA Fall Events: Launch of Toolkits and Awards of Excellence Ceremony
The 2020-2021 CAMA Board are currently working on creating a new Workplan for the 2020-2021 year to continue to provide you with professional development and networking opportunities during this unprecedented time.  There will be more dates to mark in your calendars as we complete this plan, however please note the following virtual opportunities for the Fall 2020:
  • Thursday, September 17th at 2:00 p.m. EST:  Launch of the Council Orientation Toolkit.
  • Thursday, October 1st at 2:00 p.m. EST:  CAMA Awards of Excellence and Leadership Ceremony
  • Thursday, November 5th at 2:00 p.m. EST:  Launch of the CAO Employment Contract Toolkit
More details will follow as we get closer to the dates.

If you are a Long Service Award recipient, watch for your pin and congratulatory letter in the mail over the next couple of weeks thru Canada Post.

Jake Rudolph
CAMA President 
COVID-19: Municipalities react to ‘Safe Restart Agreement’
Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) President Bill Karsten issued this statement following the federal government’s announcement of an agreement with provinces and territories on a federal “safe economic restart” plan that includes targeted funding for municipalities.

“This agreement is a promising start at addressing the financial crisis municipalities face in this pandemic, as we work to protect frontline services for Canadians and prepare to help lead Canada’s much-needed recovery.

“Municipal leaders have been working hard to protect residents and local businesses. Our unplanned costs have shot up, whether we’re turning arenas into shelters or rebalancing streets for physical distancing. At the same time, we’re losing billions from transit fares, utility charges and user fees—and we cannot run deficits. This is a crisis of non-recoverable financial losses.

“FCM has been clear: there’s no full recovery without strong municipalities, and we are pleased to see the Prime Minister acknowledge this. We thank the federal government for its leadership on this crucial way forward. We are calling on all orders of government—including provincial and territorial—to do their part to ensure municipalities get this financial support efficiently.

“Some municipalities will still be facing difficult choices about the services Canadians rely on. But this agreement provides some upfront relief, and it continues the crucial conversations Canada must have ahead of a possible second wave of COVID-19. Its support for public transit systems, in particular, recognizes the depth of the blow to municipal finances, and the central role transit must play in Canada’s recovery.

“Canada needs municipalities to lead recovery efforts on the ground, and this agreement confirms the need for a bold recovery plan. This will require a non-traditional stimulus approach to empower local governments. There’s still a path to building a better Canada out of this pandemic. That will require unprecedented collaboration among governments—with cities and communities at the table.”   For more information please contact:  FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, [email protected]
ICMA Annual Conference Assistance Scholarships
ICMA has 24 applications for complimentary registration to ICMA’s Annual Conference UNITE: A Digital Event 23-26 September 2020. The registration cost for Members is $199 before 26 August and $249 after 26 August 2020 so this is a great cost savings opportunity. All Scholarship information can be found on the ICMA website https://icma.org/annual-conference/scholarships and APPLICATION SUSPENSE IS AUGUST 9, 2020.

There are three Scholarship Categories and there will be eight winners in each category.

1.    Early Career Professional is open to any ICMA member with three years’ or fewer experience as a full-time  local government employee. There is no minimum salary requirement, although salary might be considered during the evaluation process. (See note under "How to Apply")
2.    Workplace Diversity is open to any ICMA member who is female, a minority, or identifies as LGBTQ.  It is the applicant’s responsibility to demonstrate (through additional information included in a required essay) how his or her background merits receipt of an equity award and how the local government and the community served will benefit from the individual’s conference attendance. There is no minimum salary or tenure cutoff for the Workplace Diversity award, although those factors may be considered during the evaluation process.
3.    Small Community Employee is open to any member serving in a small community with limited financial resources. Applicants can self-select to apply for this award. There is no minimum salary requirement, although salary might be considered during the evaluation process.

In order to be eligible applicants must:
  • Be a member of ICMA at time of application.
  • Must not have attended the 2019 ICMA Annual Conference (this requirement is not applicable to persons who attended a past conference as a student member or a fellow).
  • Be a full-time local government employee (not a part-time intern).
  • Submit a completed application
  • Demonstrate, through a 500-word (or less) essay, an avid interest in a career in local government management.
APPLY TODAY!   If you have questions or issues with the application site, please contact [email protected].
ONTARIO MEMBERS: New Online Tool For Viewing Highway Improvements
The Ontario government has released a new online tool that provides the people of Ontario and businesses with information about highway projects in their communities, including the status of projects that are already underway and major construction projects slated for the future. The new online tool is part of the government's plan to keep highways safe and reliable, while supporting economic growth and job creation across the province.   The new online tool is a modern, searchable and interactive publication that includes highway project information and locations, providing people and businesses with the latest updates on highway projects across Ontario.
CAMA Celebrates Municipal Heroes
CAMA is proud to celebrate all our municipal heroes. Each municipality has amazing individuals who continue to work on the front lines to provide services to the residents in their communities. 

Lennox and Addington County, ON

The regular assignments for these staff is the County Museum and Library branches.  During the pandemic they have been redeployed to Long-Term Care Homes, providing activities, companionship and care to those who are most vulnerable.

MANITOBA MEMBERS: Province Expands `Back to Work' Wage Subsidy Program
As part of #RestartMB, Manitoba's roadmap to recovery, the Manitoba government is expanding its Back to Work' wage subsidy program and providing additional financial support for businesses.  The enhanced Back to Work program will reimburse up to $5,000 for up to 10 new workers to a maximum of $50,000 per business, not for profit or charity. Businesses that have already benefited from provincial summer wage subsidies are eligible for this new wage subsidy benefit to hire or bring back an additional 10 employees. The program will now reimburse half of all wages for those newly hired to Oct. 31. Employers that have received financial support from other various provincial and federal programs are all eligible.  The application deadline is Oct. 1, with a deadline to submit proof of wages of Jan. 4, 2021. Businesses can apply for the wage subsidy starting July 16 at noon at https://manitoba.ca/covid19/business/btwmp.html.
Political Acumen During a Council Changeover
Recognizing the importance of political understanding in the role of senior municipal administrators, also referred to as political acumen, the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA) launched a Political Acumen Toolkit.   This resource can be found at politicalacumen.camacam.ca

Over the next few editions of e-Brief (and by direct e-mail to you – our members) we will be featuring each topic that is offered in the toolkit. Today’s featured category is how to deal with a changeover in Council.

Council changeover happens any time there is an election or by-election. With municipal elections mostly occurring every four years, the probability of change is high. For example, in a recent municipal election there was over 40% turnover in elected officials.

Even if all the same individuals are voted in, each term brings a new Council. With each election, the culture of Council may differ, the politics may vary, and return Councillors may become more confident in their role. Return Councillors sometimes feel more comfortable “flexing their muscle” due to a perceived authority or a desire to be more visible within the community. They could also have their eyes set on being the Head of Council for the next term and therefore push an agenda to try to make themselves more successful and well-viewed within the community.

Council changes also bring different priorities and different approaches. CAOs need to be able to adapt and immediately start building a relationship with the new Council. If you see signs that there could be a significant departure from how you and the old Council did business, you need to adjust your style quickly, so you are not at risk with the new Council. That said, sometimes it is better to accept when the writing is on the wall and prepare to begin a new chapter elsewhere. Developing the ability to read an election for these signs is a fundamental part of building your political acumen as a CAO.
Tip: When preparing to work with newly elected officials, pay attention to the candidate’s election materials to understand their priorities. While these priorities may change after the election, it helps to understand the newly elected Councillor’s motivations and will provide insights as to whether the community supports his or her initiatives.

Case Studies

Also, don’t forget to share some of your political acumen with your colleagues and sign up for CAMA’s Mentorship Forum which is available to all members at mentorship.camacam.ca. Sign up as a mentor, a mentee or just to network.

Tip for Mentor-Mentee Relationships:
Be respectful: As the American Psychological Association (APA) notes in their Introduction to Mentoring, “respect is a cornerstone of the mentoring process.” This may seem obvious, but it is crucial for both the mentor and the mentee to be considerate of each other in their interactions and treat each other professionally and ethically. Whether this is respect for each individual’s background and opinions, or simply the act of valuing the other person’s time, being polite is the key to developing a positive and fruitful relationship.

Do you have questions? Want more information?  Contact Jennifer Goodine, Executive Director, CAMA National Office, 1-866-771-2262, [email protected].
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