Ward 2 Couns. James Gordon and Rodrigo Goller are holding a climate change-focused town hall during the coming weekend, the pair announced on Tuesday.
The town hall will be held on Saturday, just two days before a motion to declare a climate emergency comes before Council. Gordon told The Guelph Post the timing was a coincidence as it was scheduled “months ago”.
The event will be held at 1:30 p.m. at Waverley Dr. Public School in Guelph’s northeast by Victoria Rd. North. The councillors have held several town halls together.
Coun. Leanne Piper will bring forward a motion on at the May 27 Council meeting for the municipality to make a climate emergency declaration, seconded by Gordon. Some Council members have defined their stance.
Though the timing was not preplanned to be just before the Council meeting, Gordon told The Post that “Rodrigo and I both thought that since climate issues are a focus for so many people right now that that topic made sense.”
Gordon emphasized that the pair do not intend to “politicize our own opinions about” the motion though they will be holding a panel and question and answer.
When asked if Gordon, who supports Piper’s motion, knows if Goller is also in favour of an emergency declaration, the two-term councillor said he has “not directly asked Rodrigo about where he stands”.
Instead, “I usually prefer to let the council hear all the delegations and receive all the letters first”, Gordon explained, pointing out that he does not “presume anything”.
Rodrigo Goller later replied to The Post, saying that he preferred a “measured” approach to climate policy and that he is against declaring an emergency.
It was stressed that the Saturday town hall is not a politicized event and will be focused on Guelph’s plans for the environment and the Net 2050 Our Energy Guelph plan.
The Guelph Post has reached out to all of Council for their opinion on the emergency declaration, for those that have not publicly reacted. A tally of those for and against the motion is being kept by The Post, but only the formal vote on Monday will reveal where each on Council sits.