By Eric Bourque
Members of Argyle municipal council say it’s time their municipality looked at reducing the number of councillors it has.
There are nine councillors in the Municipality of the District of Argyle, a number that’s too high, some council members said during an Argyle council committee-of-the-whole meeting.
Councillor Bruce Hubbard brought up the issue, saying he has heard from people who feel the municipality doesn’t need nine councillors.
Other councillors who spoke on the matter during the Jan. 31 meeting expressed similar sentiments.
Councillor Charles LeBlanc, the longest serving member of the present-day Argyle council, recalled making a recommendation long ago that council be reduced to six members.
Like Hubbard and others, he feels council should be smaller. If anything, he said, he now feels a five-member council would be big enough to do the job.
Council is to discuss the issue again, although it’s not clear how soon changes could be made to the municipality’s electoral boundaries to reduce the number of districts.
Redrawing the municipality’s electoral boundaries is a big job that would take some time, said Argyle Warden Aldric d’Entremont.
Making changes to the municipality’s electoral boundaries would require a process that would involve input from the public, councillors were told during their meeting Tuesday.
The municipality’s boundaries are due for a review in 2014, it was said at Tuesday’s meeting.
(The next municipal election is scheduled for this fall.)
While the consensus among the council members who addressed the issue during the committee-of-the-whole discussion is that Argyle council is too big, the council used to be bigger than it is now.
Back in the late 1980s, the Municipality of Argyle made changes to its electoral boundaries, creating three new districts, a move that increased council’s size from eight to 11 members, a number that later was reduced to nine.