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News Releases

May 7, 2019


Appointment of Interim Chief Administrators Recommended for Council Consideration

Released: 9:36 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – Executive Policy Committee unanimously recommended that Council consider appointing Michael Ruta as the City of Winnipeg's interim Chief Administrative Officer effective May 24, 2019, Mayor Brian Bowman announced today.

“While efforts to recruit and recommend the city’s next Chief Administrative Officer are actively underway, we need to ensure leadership accountability and continuity within the public service until the new, permanent Chief Administrative Officer is in place,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “We still have lots of work to do to clean up City Hall and move our city forward. As a Council, we need to keep moving forward with important measures such as transitioning to a multiyear budget and preparing a transit masterplan, all while building and repairing a city whose population is projected to grow well into the future.”

In addition to recommending the appointment of an interim Chief Administrative Officer, Executive Policy Committee also recommended that Council consider appointing Paul Olafson as interim Chief Financial Officer.

“It’s good governance practice to ensure a separation of duties and responsibilities between an organization chief’s administrator and its chief financial officer,” said Mayor Bowman. “What’s being recommended to Council is that a separation of duties and responsibilities be maintained between these two positions, and that the appointments be done in an open and transparent manner.”

The interim appointments recommended today by Executive Policy Committee require Council approval, and will be on the May 16 Council meeting agenda.

Doug McNeil, the City of Winnipeg’s current Chief Administrative Officer, indicated his intention to retire effective April 26, 2019. In response to reports of a significant flooding risk, his retirement date was extended to May 24, 2019 to assist the City of Winnipeg with its spring flood preparations.

Work to recruit and recommend the City of Winnipeg’s next permanent Chief Administrative Officer is ongoing.

A committee inclusive of both Executive Policy Committee members as well as non-Executive Policy Committee members has been established and tasked by Mayor Bowman with recruiting and recommending the appointment of the City of Winnipeg’s next Chief Administrative Officer.

Once the committee makes its recommendation to the Executive Policy Committee, Executive Policy Committee is then mandated by provincial legislation through The City of Winnipeg Charter to recommend appointments of statutory officers, including the Chief Administrative Officer, to Council for their consideration.

A request for proposals seeking the assistance of an external consultant to assist with the recruitment process closed last month and responses are being reviewed by the City of Winnipeg’s public service.

Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service Update: Machray Avenue Fire

Released: 11:10 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – At 8:41 a.m. on May 7, 2019, Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service crews responded to reports of a fire in a two-storey, single family home in the 500 block of Machray Avenue. Once on scene, crews encountered heavy smoke and flames and launched an offensive attack. The fire was declared under control at 9:06 a.m. The home suffered significant fire, smoke, and water damage. A neighbouring home also sustained minor damage to its exterior.

All occupants of the home safely self-evacuated prior to the arrival of crews. No injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. No damage estimates are available at this time.

Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service Update: Westgrove Way Fire

Released: 11:30 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – At 9:53 p.m. on May 6, 2019, Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service crews responded to reports of a fire in a multi-family residential complex in the 0 to 100 block of Westgrove Way. Once one scene, crews encountered smoke emanating from the basement area of one of the suites and launched an offensive attack. The fire was very quickly extinguished and crews ventilated the smoke from the home.

All occupants of the home safely self-evacuated prior to the arrival of crews. No injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire was determined to be accidental, due to blankets that had come into contact with the standing pilot light on a hot water tank. The home sustained no fire damage and moderate smoke damage.

Residents are reminded to keep all combustibles at least one meter from fuel-fired appliances. Doing so significantly reduces the chance of fire extending from an appliance and provides proper ventilation required to function efficiently and safely.

City's Public Works Department to conduct controlled burns in natural areas

Released: 2:25 p.m.

Winnipeg, MB – The City of Winnipeg's Public Works Department will be conducting controlled burns in various natural areas until June 14, weather conditions permitting. Controlled burns will be conducted in suitable wind conditions with appropriate fire guards in place.

Fire plays an important role in the preservation and restoration of prairies. Lack of fire allows weeds to invade these endangered plant communities. Controlled burns have been conducted on Winnipeg's tall grass prairies since 1986.

For more information on controlled burns please visit: City of Winnipeg – Controlled Burns.

May 7, 2019