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Council Highlights - June 22, 2017

A meeting of OAA Council was held on June 22 at the OAA Headquarters in Toronto. The following agenda items of particular note were dealt with: 
Consideration of the Motion passed by Members at the Annual General Meeting 
In accordance with OAA By-laws Council considered the resolution that was passed by the members at the AGM. 
Council has requested that the following actions be undertaken in order to ensure due diligence in considering the motion:  
a)   staff be directed to obtain a legal opinion regarding the Employment Standards Act (ESA) and the exemption as it relates to intern architects. 
b)   staff be directed to obtain an overview from the Ministry of Labour regarding the process and timeline for an amended ESA, specifically related to the exemptions within the legislation, and  
c)  notwithstanding the results of the above, that a draft communication to members be prepared for Council’s approval at the September meeting which would encourage those who have relied on the exemption to cease the practice for all employees, e.g. students, interns and employed architects and ensure that the public interest and advocacy rationale for doing so is clear.   
A report on the above items will be brought forward to the September Council meeting for further consideration. 
Reports from the Interns Committee 
Council received a number of individual reports from the Interns Committee at the June meeting. 
The first was related to a proposal regarding revision to membership fees. In response, Council has requested that staff prepare a report relative to the financial aspects of the proposed changes, the history of fee increases to date as well as other relevant information and data.  
The Interns Committee also brought forward a proposal for consideration regarding a new series of ‘Intern Tips’ which would highlight specific items that are of interest to Intern Architect. The first being proposed is an Intern Tip on mentorship. The intent would be to have a companion Practice Tip as well on the same issue, however that is drafted specifically for licensed members as the audience. This matter has been referred to the OAA Practice Committee for further consideration. 
Council also approved, in principle, that a survey of intern architects should be conducted within the context of a comprehensive OAA member and practice survey. The timing and cost of the complete survey package will be considered as part of the 2018 budgeting process.  Given the resources required for such a comprehensive survey, the timing will need to be reviewed by Council as part of its annual priorities and planning session in February each year. The last comprehensive survey of the membership was in 2012. 
The Interns Committee also presented a proposal to OAA Council to host a “MOVE: Installation party” to be held at OAA Headquarters on September 15 to kick off the renovations which are set to begin in October. Watch for more information which will be sent shortly and plan to attend! 
Roundtable on Housing Affordability 
Another member roundtable will be hosted this fall which will focus on Housing Affordability in response to the OAA's joint release of the recent report, Understanding the forces driving the shelter affordability issue. A call for volunteers is contained in this edition of OAA news. 
OAA Headquarters Renovation & Refresh 
A brief update was received from the Building Committee with respect to the renovation and refresh of the OAA Headquarters. Council was reminded that OAA staff will vacate the building over the Labour Day weekend to make way for the year-long construction and that a special OAA News Bulletin had been sent to members on June 6 advising the members of the temporary move as well as ProDem’s decision to relocate to an alternate location going forward. 
A special meeting of Council will be held on August 15 for the purpose of final review and approval of the per-tender estimate and instructions to proceed to tender. 
ACE/CALA Mutual Recognition Agreement  
OAA Council approved the final draft of the proposed Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) between the Architects Council of Europe (ACE) and the Canadian Architectural Licensing Authorities (CALA) and provided authorization on behalf of the OAA for the agreement to be officially signed at the World Design Summit on October 16, 2017, in Montreal. This MRA would take effect in the fall of 2018 and will facilitate licensing for Canadian architects within the European Union and for architects from the EU countries the same in Canada.  Detailed information on the Agreement will be posted to the OAA Website later in the fall. 
Conflict of Interest Policy 
In the interest of good governance and transparency, OAA Council approved a formal policy regarding conflict of interest for the governing Council, along with a checklist which will aid in the identification of any potential conflict that may arise for Council members as they carry out their roles and responsibilities.  
The next Council meeting will take place on September 14 in Toronto. The OAA will be moving its’ operations to a temporary location over the Labour Day weekend while we undertake the renovation of OAA Headquarters. It is anticipated that the September meeting will be held at our new ‘temporary’ location which will be announced shortly. Members are welcome to attend the open meeting. Please RSVP to Tina Carfa if you plan to attend.