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Event Program

  1. Day 1 / Nov 5
  2. Day 2 / Nov 6
  3. Day 3 / Nov 7
  4. Day 4 / Nov 8
2:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Mezzanine, Conference Floor
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Meet & Greet Reception

Commonwealth A
8:00 am - 9:15 am


Atlantic Ballroom
• Remarks by Conference Chair Mayor Pam Mood, Town of Yarmouth
• Greetings from Halifax
• Remarks by NSFM President Waye Mason, Halifax
• Remarks by Honourable Chuck Porter, Minister of Dept of Municipal Affairs & Housing
• Greetings from Mike Dolter, President, AMANS
• Greetings from Saeed El-Darahali, President & CEO, SimplyCast Presenting Sponsor
• Presentation of Climate Change Leaders Award and Carbon Surcharge Fund Recipients
• Presentation of NSFM Long Service Awards
9:15 am - 10:15 am

Keynote Address - Deep Service: A Call to a Higher Level

Bill Carr / Atlantic Ballroom
People involved in government, whether elected or employed as a civil servant, have an amazing opportunity to serve and serve deeply. Too often we get caught up in the day to day details and mania of our work-a-day world and lose sight of why we are here. Public service is a noble calling when we remember it as such. This keynote address is about bringing us back to a shared commitment to serve and serve deeply our community and thereby our society, our families and all who will come after us. Deep Service: a Call to a Higher Level seeks to unite us all and reignite the fire to serve Nova Scotia and Nova Scotians and be truly Leading the Change to a better future for all.
10:15 am - 10:45 am

Break/Viewing of Exhibits

Mezzanine & Commonwealth B
10:45 am - 11:45 am

Concurrent Session - The Political-Administrative Dichotomy

Alain Muise, CAO, District of Argyle and Deputy Mayor Emily Lutz, County of Kings / Atlantic Ballroom
Municipal Councils make many decisions that impact their community and the municipality. The best decisions are made when Council and staff have a certain level of harmonization. It sounds simple, policy and politics are the domain of elected officials and administration is the domain of staff. But the best decisions are not the result of one of these perspectives triumphing over the other, but those that integrate the technocratic public service view with the local sensitivity that municipal elected officials contribute. This session will discuss ways in which council can balance what the public expresses with what staff advises. It will look at what steps can be taken to ensure that decisions are made in the best interest of the community and the municipality.
10:45 am - 11:45 am

The NS Asset Management Program & The Municipal Flood Line Mapping Project

Jennifer Duncan, Senior Engineer and Gordon Smith, Director of Planning, DMAH / Harbour Suites
This two-part session will provide overviews of two initiatives that are creating valuable resources for municipalities to increase their resilience. The Nova Scotia Asset Management Program continues to make progress to support municipalities with their infrastructure planning efforts by developing tools and resources that lay a solid foundation for making informed, evidence-based decisions for managing municipal assets. The Municipal Flood Line Mapping Project, jointly funded by the Province and Public Safety Canada’s National Disaster Mitigation Program, will provide specifications and guidance to support municipalities in developing consistent and accurate flood maps. In the second half of this session, you will learn about this project and the resources being developed for municipalities.
10:45 am - 11:45 am

Digital Engagement for Municipalities

Saeed El-Darahali, President & CEO, SimplyCast / Tradewinds, Lobby Level
With diverse audiences, municipal communicators have the opportunity to personalize engagement for citizens and stakeholders. From all different levels — individual, organizational, public, intra- and interpersonal — municipalities and their communicators require the ability to facilitate engagement and analyze the responses received from audiences. The opportunity? Digital engagement. Digital engagement initiatives are picking up traction in many departments and offices as citizens expect to be digitally engaged. Municipal digital engagement strategies have been able to help municipalities of all sizes complement existing processes while also streamlining organizational procedures and offering citizens more in the way of personalized communication and services. this session will explore the opportunities municipalities have today to digitize components of their day-to-day operations in order to gain new insights, optimize procedures, and offer citizens engaging communication. Russell Stuart, Director of Health Services Emergency Management for the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness, will also be joining via teleconference to outline emergency scenarios and the ways in which digital technologies are able to help in preparation, response, and restoration efforts.
11:55 am - 12:55 pm

Delegate's Luncheon

Sponsored by Nova Scotia Municipal Finance Corporation / Commonwealth A
1:00 pm - 1:15 pm
1:15 pm - 2:00 pm

Annual General Meeting

Atlantic Ballroom
Audited Financial Statements / Motion re Dues / Report of the Nominating Committee
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Caucus Meetings & Elections

Regional Caucus - Seaport Room
Rural Caucus - Atlantic Ballroom
Towns Caucus - Harbour Suites
3:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Break/Viewing of Exhbiits

Mezzanine & Commonwealth B
3:30 pm - 4:15 pm

Caucus Meeting continued

Same Locations
4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

Optional Event: Women Creating Future Leaders - Moving the Needle to Gender Balance

Commonwealth A
What would you tell a woman coming into politics that you wish you had known? Come and join these frank round table discussions with your fellow female municipal colleagues.
4:45 pm - 5:45 pm

Optional Event: Powered by Communities Film Festival

QUEST / Atlantic Ballroom
Striving to make the unknown, known and the uncelebrated, celebrated - the Powered by Communities initiative is bringing community energy success stories in Nova Scotia to the forefront. As part of this initiative, the Powered by Communities Film Festival has brought together short films, some familiar and some new, to showcase the amazing achievements of Nova Scotia’s municipalities. Join us and be inspired by the possibilities of how municipal government can better serve its residents through innovative energy projects.
6:45 am - 7:30 am

Early Morning Walk (weather permitting)

Meet in the Westin Lobby
Enjoy an early morning walk lead by Rebecca Kolstee, Municipal Wellness Coordinator, Association of Municipal Administrators NS
8:00 am - 9:00 am

What can FCM do for your municipality?

Atlantic Ballroom
This panel discussion will provide you with an update on current FCM activities and initiatives. President Bill Karsten and Councillor Tom Taggart, County of Colchester and Vice-Chair of the FCM Rural Forum will discuss their funding opportunities, online resources and how they are working with NSFM to advocate for Nova Scotia’s Municipalities.
9:00 am - 9:30 am
9:30 am - 10:15 am
10:15 am - 10:45 am

Break/Viewing of Exhibits

Mezzanine & Commonwealth B
10:45 am - 11:30am
11:30 am - 12:00 pm
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Delegate's Luncheon

Commonwealth A
1:05 pm - 1:35 pm
1:35 pm - 2:35 pm

Municipal Government Needs a Good De-Cluttering

Jordi Morgan, CFIB / Atlantic Ballroom
Jordi Morgan oversees all legislative activities and communications for the Atlantic region for Canada’s largest business association. CFIB represents 5,200 business owners in Nova Scotia. Jordi chairs HRM’s Joint Project for Regulatory Modernization (JPRM) Business Advisory Panel and, along with his colleagues at CFIB, provides strong advocacy for federal, provincial and municipal red tape reduction.
2:35 pm - 3:00 pm

Break/Viewing of Exhibits

Mezzanine & Commonwealth B
3:00 pm - 3:30 pm
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Panel: Successful Partnerships between Municipalities and First Nations

Mayor Brenda Chisholm, Town of Port Hawkesbury; Laura Prosper, Eskasoni; Karen Ann Bernard, Eskasoni; Mayor Cecil Clarke, CBRM; Chief Terry Paul, Membertou; Rose Paul, CEO, Bayside Development Corporation / Atlantic Ballroom
Strong relationships with the First Nations Community are essential to the viability and sustainability of our municipalities. Come and learn how some of your colleagues have created this success within their own municipalities. Mayor Brenda Chisholm from the Town of Port Hawkesbury and Laura Prosper and Karen Ann Bernard from Eskasoni will be on hand to outline the Government FOCUS (Female Objectives Cape Breton Unama’ki Strait) initiative. Mayor Cecil Clarke, CBRM and Chief Terry Paul from Membertou will also be joining the discussion. Amalgamation created the CBRM and with that, a new relationship between the municipality and the local First Nations communities began. Leveraging traditional knowledge and contemporary processes, the communities have created a strong connection and positive change. Growing together, through shared projects and priorities, CBRM and Membertou have forged ahead in the spirit of cooperation and collaboration, producing shared infrastructure and economic benefits, resulting in reconciliation via action; not just words. Rose Paul will also join the panel to discuss her experiences with economic development in municipalities.
6:15 pm - 7:00 pm


7:00 pm - 9:00 pm


Sponsored by Frank Cowan Company Limited / Commonwealth A
9:00 pm - 11:30 pm


Featuring BLUESMOBILE / Commonwealth A
8:00 am - 9:00 am

Sponsored Session: Are your Municipal Facilities Climate Ready?

AMERESCO / Harbour Suites
Climate disruption is causing damage to infrastructure, cost increases, and adverse health effects that have enormous financial implications for municipalities. Ameresco is helping municipalities of all sizes reduce exposure to climate risks, lower liability costs, and reduce operating costs by making new and existing facilities more efficient and climate resilient.
9:00 am - 10:00 am

Concurrent Session: Bulk Purchase of Electronic Voting Services - AMANS

Kevin Arjoon, Municipal Clerk, HRM; Mark Phillips, CAO, Region of Windsor/West Hants / Atlantic Ballroom
Municipal Councils will soon have to decide which voting method they wish to use for the upcoming 2020 municipal elections. This session will provide key information with regard to: Council’s role in municipal elections; the use of e-voting in past municipal elections; the realities of electronic voting; and perceived vulnerabilities. HRM is finalizing the e-voting services RFP for the 2020 municipal elections. The RFP includes language enabling other municipalities to use the HRM selected vendor and the pricing outlined in the RFP proposal. Joining the e-voting services RFP will provide significant cost savings to municipalities. This session will provide information about how to join and municipal obligations. Presenters: Kevin Arjoon, Municipal Clerk, HRM; and Mark Phillips, CAO, Region of Windsor/West Hants.
9:00 am - 10:00 am

Concurrent Session: PVSC Strategic Update

Warden Jimmy MacAlpine, Chair, PVSC Board of Directors and Kathy Gillis, CEO, PVSC / Commonwealth A
As a municipally funded service provider to all 50 municipalities in Nova Scotia, Property Valuation Services Corporation (PVSC) prides itself in providing municipalities with the information required to budget, set municipal tax rates and bill and collect property taxes. Grounded in Service Level Agreements with municipalities, PVSC has spent the last year expanding its client care program highlighting its commitment to the quality of the assessment roll. Come hear how PVSC is capitalizing on emerging technology to continuously provide municipalities with timely, accurate assessment information while exploring alternative methods of revenue generation.
10:10 am - 11:15 am

How Immigration is Helping Employers and Communities Succeed

Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Minister of Immigration, Province of Nova Scotia / Atlantic Ballroom
Nova Scotia is welcoming a record number of newcomers. The Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Q.C., Minister of Immigration, along with representatives from NS Health Authority and the NSOI, will discuss how immigration benefits all Nova Scotians through a strengthened economy and population growth. During this informative panel, learn how the Nova Scotia Office of Immigration’s innovative programs are supporting businesses and communities succeed by helping employers fill labour needs, diversifying our communities, contributing to improvements in healthcare and education, and the retention of newcomers.
11:15 am - 11:30 am

Our appreciation to our

Event Sponsors

Presenting Sponsor


Premier Sponsors

Frank Cowan







Where to find us

Venue & Info

Venue Details

Live your best life when you choose a stay at The Westin Nova Scotian. The hotel offers a relaxing interlude on the Halifax Harbour. Also located near Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Scotiabank Centre and Neptune Theatre. The modern, upscale rooms and suites offer luxurious accommodations with contemporary amenities. Take in the stunning views of the Halifax Harbour or Cornwallis Park while relaxing in our signature Heavenly® Beds. With nearby shopping and abundant dining options, you will enjoy all that downtown has to offer. After a long day, refresh in the fully equipped fitness centre, which also includes an indoor heated pool and whirlpool. If you're in the mood for fine dining, opt in for room service or put on your favorite garb and head to our on-site restaurant, Elements on Hollis. There's no limit to feeling good about your stay at The Westin Nova Scotia.


1181 Hollis Street, Halifax

Phone Number:


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