identifiable individual

FILTER BY:

Norfolk County

October 29, 201929 October 2019

The Ombudsman determined that council for Norfolk County did not contravene the Municipal Act, 2001 when it went in camera on March 26 and April 2, to discuss the hiring of an interim Chief Administrative Officer (CAO). The meetings relied partly on the exceptions for personal matters about an identifiable individual. The Ombudsman found that the exception for personal matters of an identifiable individual. This exception generally does not apply to information that pertains to an individual in their professional capacity, however, it does apply if such information reveals something personal or relates to scrutiny of an individual’s conduct. Accordingly, the Ombudsman found that the discussions about the hiring of a candidate for the interim CAO position, and the performance of identifiable staff members fit within the exception for personal matters for an identifiable individual.

Norfolk County

October 29, 201929 October 2019

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for Norfolk County on March 26, at which a potential candidate for the vacant interim CAO position attended. Some council members described the closed session as a “very informal interview” with the candidate. The Ombudsman found the discussion of personal information about the candidate, and the candidate’s suitability for the position fit within the exception for personal matters about an identifiable individual.

Municipality of West Nipissing

October 03, 201903 October 2019

The Ombudsman reviewed an in camera session of a meeting of council for the Municipality of West Nipissing during which council was to discuss the relationship between staff and council. The discussion instead involved shouting, pointing and arguments between council members. The Ombudsman found discussions about relationships between staff and council, even if they had taken place, would not have fit within the personal matters exception. Information pertaining to the professional capacity of an individual is not personal in nature even if discussions of relationships involve sensitive information the municipality would prefer to not discuss publicly.

Municipality of The Nation

August 15, 201915 August 2019

The Ombudsman found that council for the Municipality of The Nation contravened the Municipal Act, 2001 when it discussed in closed session the subject of changes to councillor remuneration. The Ombudsman found this discussion did not fall within the exception for personal matters that was cited for closing the meeting.

Municipality of The Nation

August 15, 201915 August 2019

The Ombudsman found that council for the Municipality of The Nation violated the Municipal Act, 2001 on January 14, 2019, when it discussed in closed session the subject of economic development activities, as this discussion did not fall within the “personal matters” exception that was cited for closing the meeting.

Town of Amherstburg

June 29, 201829 June 2018

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the Town of Amherstburg relying on the personal matters exception to discuss the conduct of various identifiable individuals. The discussion included allegations that these individuals acted improperly. The Ombudsman found that the discussion fit within the personal matters exception.

Township of The North Shore

June 29, 201829 June 2018

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the Township of The North Shore relying on the personal matters exception to discuss payment of remuneration for volunteer firefighters. During the closed session, council identified specific firefighters by name and discussed whether they had satisfied their employment conditions. The Ombudsman found that the discussion fit within the personal matters exception.

Township of The North Shore

June 29, 201829 June 2018

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the Township of The North Shore relying on the personal matters exception to discuss a vacant council seat. During the closed session, council discussed whether to fill the vacancy by appointment or by by-election, and identifiable individuals who could fill the vacancy. The discussion about identifiable individuals involved personal information regarding the individuals’ qualifications and experience. The Ombudsman found that council’s discussion about how to fill the council vacancy did not fit within the personal matters exception. The Ombudsman found that the discussion involving personal information about the identifiable individuals fit within the personal matters exception. However, the Ombudsman noted that in the interests of transparency, discussions relating to filling a council vacancy should be held in open session.

Norfolk County

July 05, 201705 July 2017

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the County of Norfolk to receive a deputation from representatives of the Port Dover Community Health Centre Board. The meeting relied on the personal matters exception. The deputation related to the board’s operations and included a request that the county release an installment of a monetary grant. The municipality highlighted that the deputation contained information that could affect the personal lives of individual members of the board. The Ombudsman acknowledged that the board was composed of volunteers, however, the deputation contained information that was professional in nature and related to the business of the board. Accordingly, the Ombudsman found that the discussion did not fit within the personal matters exception.

Township of Laird

January 24, 201724 January 2017

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by the Laird Fairgrounds Management Board to discuss an incident at a horse arena that involved township employees, members of the board, and members of the public. The meeting was closed under the personal matters exception. The board’s discussion identified individuals by name and referred to allegations about conduct outside the scope of the individuals’ official roles. The Ombudsman found that the board referenced information in camera that had been discussed during the open portion of the meeting, but this was incidental to the main discussion, which focused on personal information.

Township of Laird

January 24, 201724 January 2017

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by the Laird Fairgrounds Management Board for the Township of Laird to discuss an incident at a horse arena that involved township employees, members of the board and members of the public. The meeting was closed under the personal matters exception. The board’s discussion identified individuals by name and referred to allegations about conduct outside the scope of the individuals’ official roles. The Ombudsman found that the discussion fit within the personal matters exception since it related to personal information about identifiable individuals.

Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands

September 08, 201608 September 2016

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands to discuss the assignment of the Chief Administrative Officer’s (CAO) duties. The meeting was closed under the personal matters exception. The discussion focused on the specific skills and work experience of identified employees who were being considered for the interim CAO role. There was a brief mention of the CAO hiring process which was incidental to the main discussion. The Ombudsman found that the meeting fit within the personal matters exception because council discussed the qualification of identifiable individuals. The Ombudsman found that general consideration of the CAO hiring process would not have fit within this exception, however any such discussions were brief and incidental to the main discussion.

City of Port Colborne

November 19, 201519 November 2015

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the City of Port Colborne that relied on the personal matters exception to discuss an update on the municipality’s insurance program. The discussion included specific ongoing claims against the municipality in an illustrative matter without personal identifiers. This did not form a substantial part of the discussion. The Ombudsman found that council’s discussion did not fit within the personal matters exception.

City of Elliot Lake

April 24, 201524 April 2015

The Ombudsman reviewed a closed meeting held by council for the City of Elliot Lake, which relied on the personal matters exception to discuss the recruitment of a new chief administrative officer (CAO). During the closed meeting, council discussed an identifiable individual who had submitted an application for the CAO position. The discussion involved the contents of the application, and included expressing opinions about the individual’s qualifications. The discussion also involved third-party information that was included in the application. The Ombudsman found that the discussion involved personal information about the applicant and third-party information. Accordingly, the discussion fit within the personal matters exception.