by Shaun McLaughlin
Last night in Clayton (Sept. 24), 35 people showed up for the last of three public meetings to discuss a possible change in Council composition. Combined with the attendance in Almonte and Pakenham (minus the count of people who came to more than one), about 60 people attended the meetings. Given we have over 10,000 voters, that is a slim turnout.
Last night’s crowd, most of whom were from Clayton or the immediate area, were a testy bunch. There was vocal opposition to any change in Council composition—both a size reduction and creation of a deputy mayor. The tenor of the Clayton meeting was far different than in Almonte and in Pakenham, where the majority showed a willingness to accept a change.
Many people in Clayton who oppose a size reduction fear a loss of representation along the lines of: “It is hard enough to get a councillor’s attention with four, what are my chances with just three or two.”