Council approved amendments to a by-law allowing continued functioning of the College during an emergency situation.
Introduced in 2007, CPSO’s By-law for Declared Emergency was invoked for the first time in March 2020 in response to the state of emergency declared by the Ontario government due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The powers under the by-law were used to postpone the 2020 Council district elections from the spring to the fall. Council declared the emergency situation over at its meeting in September 2021.
The By-law for Declared Emergency is intended to provide some flexibility and processes to ensure Council, the Executive Committee and Registration Committee are able to continue functioning during an emergency situation.
The main changes to the by-law are:
- A reduced quorum (three) for the Executive Committee during an emergency, including for declaring the emergency in the first place.
- A new mechanism for filling vacancies on the Executive Committee during an emergency.
- Removing the provision that automatically made all members of Council ex-officio members of the Registration Committee. The Executive Committee can exercise the powers it already has to appoint committee members as needed between meetings of Council.
- Express authority to vary how by-laws are applied during the emergency without amending the by-laws. After the emergency, the by-laws will be applied as enacted.
- A statement of principle to exercise powers only to the extent necessary.
- Criteria or guidance for declaring the emergency over.