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Communicating with Council

The City values citizen and stakeholder views and encourages all citizens to share these with Council and committees in a respectful and open manner. Opinions and concerns can be communicated through informal and formal channels.

Public Participation at Formal Meetings
Virtual vs In-Person

City Council, General Committee, Planning Committee, and reference committee meetings are being conducted in a hybrid format, with both in-person and electronic participation. Members of the public may observe the proceedings by attending in person in the Council Chambers, or by accessing the live webcast on the City's YouTube channel. Advisory committee meetings are livestreamed only.

Visit for meeting agendas and information. Details about how to participate in virtual meetings is outlined below as applicable.

​Informal Ch​annels

Communications shared through informal channels are NOT a matter of public record and not referred to during Council’s decision-making process.

E-mail & Phone

Councillors can be contacted by e-mail and phone and by general mail sent to PO Box 400, Barrie, ON, L4M 4T5.

Planning Application Neighbourhood Meetings
Named by Ward

Neighbourhood Meetings are a resident’s first opportunity to hear about a proposed development in their neighbourhood. Attendees will meet their Councillor, City staff and the development applicant, learn more about the City’s planning approval process and timelines, and have an opportunity to ask questions and share thoughts regarding the proposed development.

The main purpose of a Neighbourhood Meeting is to share information with residents. City staff will not be making recommendations on the application or a detailed analysis on the proposal (these will occur later in the review process). There will not be a debate on the merits of the proposal between City staff and the applicant.

Neighbourhood Meetings are not legislated meetings, rather they are a preliminary step provided above and beyond what the City is legislated to host. Later in the planning process, residents will be able to share their opinions on these applications during the Public Meeting

For more information on Neighbourhood Meetings, please contact Planning Services at (705) 739-4208 or

Upcoming Neighbourhood Meetings are promoted via:

Town Hall Meetings
Organized by Ward

Town Hall Meetings are organized by ward and provide opportunities for residents to meet with their Councillor, Mayor and neighbours to discuss City-wide and ward-specific issues in an open forum. Residents can ask questions, voice concerns, engage with neighbours, hear from City staff and stakeholders, and provide feedback regarding City projects and initiatives.

Virtual T​own Halls started taking place during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more information on Town Hall Meetings in your ward, please contact your Councillor or the Office of the Mayor.

Upcoming Town Hall Meetings are promoted via:

Formal Channels

Communications shared through formal channels are a matter of public record, and are documented and referred to throughout Council’s decision-making process.

Circulation List
City Council, General Committee, Planning Committee, 
and Reference Committee Meetings
The Circulation List is a public document reviewed by Council each week, provided to the media and published on the Legislative Information Portal. This is an alternative to speaking at a City Council, General Committee, Planning Committee, or Reference Committee meeting.
Circulation List submissions can be made by:
  • email:
  • fax: 705-739-4243
  • mail: City of Barrie Legislative Services, PO Box 400. Barrie, ON  L4M 4T5

Submissions must:

  • Address the Mayor and Members of Council
  • Clearly indicate it is to be included in the circulation list
  • Include a cover letter with your complete mailing address, e-mail address, home and business phone numbers
  • Only include information you wish to be on public record
  • Be received by 9am on Wednesday for circulation the following week
 Correspondence containing profanity or submitted anonymously will not be circulated.
Open Delegations
Reference Committee Meetings

Reference Committees meetings will occur at the Call of the Chair or as required.

Stakeholders may request the opportunity to share communications as an Open Delegation at a Reference Committee meeting. Up to four Open Delegations may be heard each meeting.

Send your completed Open Delegation Request Form to Legislative & Court Services to request your Open Delegation. If you would like to include additional information, please contact Service Barrie at (705) 726-4242

As per Section 239 of the Municipal Act, 2001, an Open Delegation request may be refused if the topic relates to a subject matter that permits a meeting or part of a meeting to be closed to the public, promotes a specific business, is not of community interest or may impugn the reputation of any individual or member.

Open Delegation Guidelines:

  • Speakers have five minutes maximum
  • Speak only about the matter listed on your request
  • Supporting documents should be received by 12pm (noon) the Tuesday prior to the meeting
  • Do not use profanity, offensive words or insulting expressions
  • Do not question the reputation of any individual member
  • Individuals are entitled to appear as a delegate once every three months

At the discretion of the Reference Committee meeting Chair, the floor may be opened to community attendees who wish to speak regarding a meeting agenda item.

Public Meeting Participation
General Committee and Planning Committee Meetings

Anyone may share communications about topics listed under the ‘Public Meeting’ section of a General Committee or Planning Committee agenda.

Public Meetings are provincially legislated for certain applications (i.e. Planning Act). At Public Meetings, applicants and City staff provide details of the proposed application. The public then has an opportunity to present their comments regarding the application.

City staff gather communications shared at Public Meetings and prepare a report containing recommendations to be heard at a future Planning/General Committee meeting. Planning/General Committee will then discuss the report and make recommendations for Council to consider at the next City Council meeting.

Public Meeting Guidelines

  • Organized groups should consider designating a spokesperson
  • Multiple individuals speaking on the same issue should avoid repetition and provide new information only

Under the Planning Act if you do not express your views at a Public Meeting before a decision is made, the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) may refuse your request for referral, or dismiss all or part of your appeal without holding a hearing.

How to Participate in a Public Meeting During COVID-19

During the COVID-19 emergency, members of the public can participate or provide written comments concerning items on Planning Committee and General Committee agendas* as follows:

Planning Committee:

  • Email or mail written comments to or City of Barrie Legislative Services, PO Box 400, Barrie, ON, L4M 4T5
  • To speak at the virtual Public Meeting, contact the Legislative Services Department in advance of the meeting by emailing or calling 705-739-4220 x5500. Staff will follow up with appropriate instructions on how to participate.

    *Members of the public are not permitted to speak to Staff Reports on the Planning Committee Agenda

General Committee:

  • At this time, only written comments are being accepted. Email or mail written comments to or City of Barrie Legislative Services, PO Box 400, Barrie, ON  L4M 4T5
Presentations and Deputations
City Council Meetings

Interested citizens may communicate with Council by making a presentation or Deputation at a City Council meeting.


Individuals and community groups can make a presentation at City Council meetings to share community announcements, status reports, initiatives, programs or services. Up to three presentations may be heard at each meeting. Complete a Presentation Request Form ​at least two weeks before the proposed presentation date and email it to

Your request will be included on the Circulation List for consideration. If the request is approved, you will be notified by the Legislative & Court Services Department to confirm a date for the presentation or to be advised of Council’s decision.


Please note individuals may email written comments to

Individuals in support or opposition to a motion made at the previous General Committee meeting may request to make a Deputation. This requires a completed Deputation Request Form or a written submission to that:

  • addresses to the Mayor and Members of Council.
  • clearly indicates you wish to make a Deputation to City Council in support or opposition to the matter, describing the nature of your support or opposition as concisely as possible.
  • includes a cover letter with your complete mailing address, e-mail address, home and business phone numbers.
  • only includes information you wish to be on public record.
  • is received before 12pm (noon) on the Wednesday before the City Council meeting.

As requests for deputations are received, staff will follow up with appropriate instructions on how to participate in the virtual City Council meeting.

Following deputations, City Council will make a decision regarding the motion later in the meeting. If requested, you will be notified of the issue’s outcome in writing.

Process re Deputation Requests Received after the Deadline:

  • In the event a Deputation request is received after the Council agenda has been prepared and published, or in an emergency, an individual may still request the opportunity to appear before City Council in support or opposition to a recommendation from General Committee. In this case, please contact the City Clerk at or 705-739-4220 x5500.
  • The City Clerk will notify the Mayor and the Mayor will call for a vote of Council at the meeting to allow the person to speak. Upon a majority vote in the affirmative, the person will be permitted to address Council.
  • If you prefer not to make a deputation, your comments can be submitted in writing and will be placed on the Circulation List for Council’s consideration. 

Presentation & Deputation Guidelines

  • Individuals have five minutes maximum for deputations, 10 minutes maximum for presentations
  • Supporting documents must be received on or before 12pm (noon) on the Wednesday prior to the meeting
  • Electronic presentations must be submitted at least 48 hours in advance (12 slides maximum), otherwise it will not be permitted
  • Direct your communications to the Chair
  • All communications should be confined to the stated business
  • Organized groups should consider designating a spokesperson
  • Multiple individuals speaking on the same issue should avoid repetition and provide new information only

All City Council meetings are open to the public and the media, and as such, your comments may be reported in the news.

All formal communication requests must be directed to the Legislative & Court Services Department.

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