(Victoria, BC) – Once again, the Rural Municipality of St Clements, MB, is getting attention for its commitment to public engagement. The RM received an Honourable Mention for Organization of the Year at the IAP2 (International Association for Public Participation) Canada Core Values Awards, presented recently in Victoria, BC.
There has been an increasing demand by residents of this fast-growing municipality to be consulted early and often. The traditional government practice of little to no public consultation was causing frustration for residents and council and often derailed worthy projects. After witnessing successful use of public participation in a neighbouring municipality’s controversial project, the RM of St. Clements seriously turned to public participation.
Under the leadership of Mayor Debbie Fiebelkorn and CAO DJ Sigmundson, the municipality committed to P2 practices in its 2015-2018 Strategic Plan and has embedded them in all aspects of governance. The municipality now makes better decisions that reflect the interests and concerns of those affected.
As a result of this commitment, public concerns are addressed and strong mandates have been secured on a variety of projects, including curbside waste and recycling pickup, wastewater treatment options, a levy for zebra mussel boat inspections, recreation and housing developments.
“Really listening to residents has helped to grow mutual trust and confidence that is resulting in better results for everyone,” says Mayor Fiebelkorn. “We were very honoured to receive this award. It is gratifying to know that all our hard work as a small municipality is recognized when we are competing against much larger municipalities and cities.”
This is the second time St Clements has been recognized for that commitment. In 2016, IAP2 Canada awarded it, in partnership with the RMs of East St Paul and West St Paul, Honourable Mention for Organization of the Year.
Edmonton received Organization of the Year honours for 2018. A complete list of this year’s winners can be found at www.iap2canada.ca/Core_Values_Awards.