City Council composition

Guelph is served by a Mayor and 12 part-time Councillors, two for each of Guelph’s six wards. Reviewing the structure of City Council can help us understand if the size and coverage are adequate for our community.

During the first phase of the review, research and community consultation will explore whether the present size and structure of Council can effectively represent you at the local level as our population increases. We will use the Municipal Act, 2001 alongside best practices in other municipalities and community engagement to inform a report to Council.

A review of Council’s composition will look at

  • How many Councillors Guelph does Guelph need
  • Whether Councillors should be full time or part time
  • Whether Councillors should be dedicated to a specific ward or if they could serve Guelph at large

What this review does not look at

  • Council benefits and pay
    • Council benefits and pay will be considered by a resident advisory committee in 2022 following the completion of the Council composition and ward boundary review.
  • How residents vote in municipal elections (voting systems and methods)
    • A review of voting systems and methods will include community engagement in November 2020. A report to Council with recommendations on voting systems and methods will happen in early 2021 to be ready for the 2022 municipal election.
  • Role and work of Council
    • The role and work of Council is determined primarily by provincial legislation such as the Municipal Act and Planning Act as well as the style and preferences of elected officials.

Council composition virtual town hall

On Monday, August 25, we hosted a town hall to discuss the Council composition review, walk you through the options and answer your questions.

Questions and answers from the Council composition virtual town hall

Watch the virtual town hall

Review the presentation

Council Composition Virtual Town Hall Presentation

Accessible transcript of the townhall


How many councillors does Guelph need?Benefits and challenges of full time or part-time councillorsWard councillors or councillors-at-largeSize and structure of CouncilGuelph’s current electoral system

For more information

Dylan McMahon, Manager and Deputy City Clerk
Legislative Services, City Clerk’s Office
City of Guelph
519-822-1260 extension 2811
[email protected]