E-News Bulletin--January-February 2018-In This Issue

In this issue:

  • UNSM News: ●Response from Minister Miller, regarding Dee Population; ●Job Competition for UNSM Policy Analyst; ●Letter to Minister of Finance, in advance of the Budget; ●President's Activities;
  • UNSM Board Report – January 26, 2018
  • Upcoming Workshops/Events/Initiatives
  • Provincial Issues: ●Lieutenant Governor’s Medal for Excellence in Public Administration; ●Order of Nova Scotia; ●Guide to Planning Accessible Meetings and Events; ●Parental Accommodations Committee
  • FCM: ●Applications Being Accepted for GMF's Capital Project Funding 
  • Other Announcements: ●Centre for Local Prosperity Plans to Release a Two-Year Regional Study; ●Nova Scotia Macro Economic Outlook for 2018-2022; ●Request for Expressions of Interest for the Environmental Damages Fund 
Update on UNSM Board of Directors
UNSM Board of Director Outcomes from January meeting
Upcoming Workshops/Events/Initiatives
Provincial Issues
Federal Issues
Other Announcements

UNSM News--January-February 2018

Response from Minister Miller, regarding Deer Population

On January 22nd, 2018, President Geoff Stewart sent the Minister of Environment, the Honourable Margaret Miller, the UNSM Statement of Concern--Deer Population. Click here to view that letter..  Her response, sent on February 8th, 2018, is available by clicking here.


Job Competition for new UNSM Staff Position

Before the end of the week, UNSM will be advertising for a job competition for a new UNSM staff position. We are advertising on our website, the AMA list-serve and Career Beacon.  The competition will close March 16th, 2018.


Letter to Minister of Finance, The Honourable Karen Casey

In advance of the Budget, President Stewart wrote to The Honourable Karen Casey, Minister of Finance, on February 15, 2018.  To view a copy of that letter, click here.


President's Activities

For a list of the President's activities over the past months, click here.

Upcoming Workshops/ Events/Initiatives--January-February 2018

  • Safety Services Nova Scotia 36th Annual Workplace Safety Conference - April 9-10, 2018, Halifax Convention Centre, Halifax, NS
  • UNSM Spring Workshop - May 10–12, 2018, Mariners Centre, Yarmouth, NS
  • The Atlantic Active Transportation Summit -  May 23-24, 2018, Halifax Central Library, Halifax, NS
  • FCM Conference - May 31 - June 3, 2018, Halifax Convention Centre, Halifax, NS--We encourage you to take advantage of the Halifax location and attend the Conference.  It is a wonderful learning opportunity.  also watch for an e-mail regarding the opportunity to showcase your community and successes to the over 3,000 delegates, companions and exhibitors expected to attend.


UNSM Board Report--January 26, 2018


  1. Municipal Government Act Review--The Department of Municipal Affairs met with the Board to discuss the status of the MGA Review and next steps.  The discussion noted the need to undertake a full review of the Act and the UNSM’s request to ensure the Act was enabling rather than prescriptive.  A lot of work has been undertaken in the last two years, and this work lays a strong foundation for moving forward in a more holistic way.  
  2. Ministers Roundtable meeting with the UNSM Executive January 24, 2018--The Board discussed the meeting, information is included in the attached initiatives report.  The Ministers in attendance included Ministers Mombourquette, Casey, MacLellan, Furey, and Rankin.  The Board noted the increase in the requests UNSM is receiving from the province to work with them on major issues.  Currently there are joint committees established to work with a number of departments such as: ●Municipal Affairs:  Municipal Modernization, MGA Review, Parental Accommodations, Accountability and Transparency, Municipal Indicators, Fire, Asset Management, Gas Tax, etc.; ●Justice:  Accessibility, Cannabis, Policing; ●Environment:  Solid Waste, Round Table on Environment and Sustainable Prosperity; ●Business:  Tourism Short Term Rental; ●NS Health Authority:  Doctor Recruitment; ●Others: 211, Active Transportation, Building Advisory, Municipal Finance Corporation, PVSC; ●As well work is underway to establish joint committees on housing, seniors, international trade and roads.
  3. Municipal Modernization--UNSM, AMA and the Department of Municipal Affairs are beginning a discussion on how best to move forward in helping municipalities better meet the needs of their citizens.  The discussion builds on previous work such as the Towns Task Force, Fiscal Review, MGA Review, structure etc.  We recognize the answers may vary across the province.  A report from a workshop being held January 31 for mayors, wardens and CAO’s will be shared.  
  4. Parental Accommodations--The Board supported the recommendations from the joint provincial/municipal committee on this issue.  Once the recommendations are presented to the province, the committee’s report will be released.  The issue of compensation for new parents was raised.  The Board recognized most elected officials will continue to serve their citizens in some way, and supported full compensation.
  5. UNSM Name--The Board approved the name of the Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities.  Work will continue on the logo and branding materials, as well as the website.  Until the work is complete, the old name will continue to be used. 
  6. Short Term Rentals Committee Appointments--The Department of Business asked UNSM to appoint two elected officials to serve on this committee.  A number of applications were received.  The Board has appointed Mayor Bill MacDonald, Town of Annapolis Royal and Councillor Perla MacLeod, County of Victoria.
  7. Solid Waste--The Board approved UNSM taking a lead in developing a proposal on extended producer responsibility with the Solid Waste Chairs and Priorities Group.  The Board discussed the issue of film plastic, and will continue to explore the issue.
  8. Regional Meetings/Events--Tentative dates have been set for regional meetings.  Locations to be determined.  The dates are:  March 29, April 9, April 16, April 23 and April 27th.  UNSM is working on an annual calendar, scheduling regional meetings and resolutions meeting, and these will be on the UNSM website.  As details are finalized, they will be posted.  As well the UNSM Board decided to hold monthly teleconference calls with Mayors and Wardens the last Monday of every month, to share information, ideas and concerns.  More information to follow.  
  9. Other Matters Discussed--The Board discussed safety issues around motorized scooters used by physically disabled people and motorized bikes; code of conduct for municipal elected officials, electoral representation, and the status of UNSM initiatives.   
2. Board Evaluation Survey
The Board completed a board evaluation survey. Results will be compiled and assessed by Town of Windsor CAO Louis Coutinho. Results will be shared with the Board at their June meeting.
3. Provincial Election Strategy
The Board agreed to send out a media release highlighting UNSM's provincial election strategy including the three candidates presenting at the spring workshop. This was sent out during the UNSM Spring Workshop.
4. Regional Meeting Outcomes 
Proposed resolutions coming out of the regional meetings were shared with the board. These included:
1. REN Improvements - to strengthen and ensure success of RENS in order to improve economic development opportunities in all regions.
2. Better Utilization and Taxation of Agricultural Land
3. Mechanisms to encourage more regional planning
4. Rural High Speed Internet
5. Doctor Shortage and Recruitment
6. Public Transit - making it easier for municipalities to create an inter-municipal public transit system without having to go through the Utility and Review Board
7. Forestry - promoting sustainable management practices
8. Senior Safety Program - establishing guaranteed long-term provincial funding over five years
9. Affordable Housing
10. Tourism strategy for Northumberland Shore - link to Regional Enterprise Networks
11. Rural Roads 
12. Improved Consultation with Municipalities when Designating Protected Areas - both Land and Marine
13. Improved Provincial and Municipal Funding to Support Public Libraries
14. Improved Access to Building Inspectors
A series of follow-up regional meetings will be held to prepare the resolutions which will be submitted to the UNSM Executive for consideration.
5. Rebranding Exercise
It was suggested that the board start focussing on a rebranding exercise as part of its communications/engagement strategy. This would include modernizing the website and conducting a member profile survey.

Provincial Issues--January-February 2018

2017 Lieutenant Governor's Medal for Excellence in Public Administration:  Call for Nominations

You are invited to nominate an exceptional public servant for the 2017 IPAC Nova Scotia Lieutenant Governor’s Medal for Excellence in Public Administration. This prestigious award recognizes exceptional achievement in public administration and encourages quality service in all orders of government. The Medal and certificate are presented at an annual ceremony by the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia, patron of the award.

Who is eligible:
A nominee should have significantly changed the performance or delivery of public administration in Nova Scotia. The award criteria are:
• A unique and outstanding contribution to public administration in the federal, provincial, municipal or academic fields.
• A contribution related to public administration as opposed to scientific or technical work.
• Activities related to community service and/or furthering IPAC will only be considered supporting evidence.

Who cannot be nominated:
Anyone holding elected political office cannot be nominated while holding office. Members of the Awards Committee cannot be nominated.

How to nominate someone:
Anyone may nominate a person for the award. As well, the IPAC Awards Committee considers the nominations from the two preceding years during its review.

The nomination package should include, but is not limited to:
• Cover letter including reasons for the nomination
• Resume of the nominee
• Statements supporting the nomination from at least three references
• Supporting documentation, as appropriate (newspaper articles, citations, etc.)

Nominations will be kept in strict confidence.

Public sector employees in Nova Scotia have made many important contributions to the improvement of public administration in the province and beyond. The IPAC Nova Scotia Regional Group is proud to be able to recognize outstanding achievement by way of this Medal program.


Guide to Planning Accessible Meetings and Events

Twenty percent of Nova Scotians have a disability, and this number is growing with our aging population. To help ensure that all Nova Scotians are able to participate in events, the Accessibility Directorate has developed a Guide to Planning Accessible Meetings and Events. The Large-print accessible-PDF is available on the Accessibility Directorate’s website.Nova Scotia’s Accessibility Act states that we will become an accessible province by 2030 by preventing and removing barriers in areas of: information and communication; employment; education; the delivery and receipt of goods and services; the built environment; and transportation. Improving accessibility at meetings and events is just one step towards this goal. 
Regardless of the size of your event, accessibility considerations can be incorporated into all areas of the planning process. This Guide provides you with suggestions to consider to ensure all attendees can fully participate in the proceedings.

For more information about hosting accessible meetings and events, please contact the Accessibility Directorate at  or 902-424-8280.


Order of Nova Scotia

The Order of Nova Scotia is the highest honour that the province can bestow on an individual. It recognizes people who have made an exceptional contribution to their community and the province. Some individuals who have been invested into the Order of Nova Scotia are household names. Others have enriched the life of our province through acts and deeds that are known to only a few. But they all share one very important thing: they have been nominated by their fellow Nova Scotians for the honour.

I would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to nominate individuals in your community. Nomination forms can be downloaded from the Protocol Office website at http://novascotia.ca/iga/order.asp or, you can call and request that a nomination form be sent to you. Please contact Ms. Sharon Burrows, A/Coordinator of the Order of Nova Scotia Program at (902) 424-2467, or .

Ms. Burrows will be pleased to assist you by forwarding material or answering any questions you may have regarding the Order of Nova Scotia. The closing date for nominations is Friday, March 16, 2018.

Thank you for your consideration and co-operation. I look forward to receiving the nominations of deserving Nova Scotians from communities across the province to this prestigious Order.


Parental Accommodations Committee

The Parental Accommodations Committee has released their Final Report.  Click here for a copy of the Report.  On January 29, 2018, President Geoff Stewart wrote to Minister Mombourquette endorsing the Committee'sthe Committee's Report and full compensation.  Click here to view a copy of this correspondence.