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Role of City Councillors

Council is the governing body of the City and the custodian of its powers, both legislative and administrative. The City may exercise only those powers granted to it by legislation.

Policy making at the local level is limited and controlled by provincial government statute. The City of Winnipeg Charter provides the majority of powers and authority to the City of Winnipeg. However, other statutes extend additional authority to City Council in its decision making process.

The composition of City Council is legislated under Part 3 of The City of Winnipeg Charter and consists of 15 Councillors and the Mayor. Each Councillor represents an individual ward while the Mayor is elected by a vote of the city-at-large.

Councillors have a dual role, as they are members of Council (decisions affecting the whole city) and members of the Community Committees (local community issues).

City Council exercises its powers either by by-law or resolution passed at a regular or special meeting when a quorum is present. Pursuant to the Charter, Council has the authority to establish committees of Council and Council may, by by-law delegate a power, duty or function to a committee of Council.

The authority to make final decisions on the following matters remains with Council and cannot be delegated to any political or administrative level below Council:

  • authority to enact a by-law;
  • authority to approve an operating or capital budget;
  • authority to appoint, suspend or dismiss a statutory officer; or
  • authority to enter into a collective agreement in respect of employees;

Source: Page 88-89 of the City of Winnipeg Municipal Manual pdf


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