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archival descriptions
Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg Series
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Metro, General Government.

Metro’s General Government was composed of its Chairman of Council, the Council Administration (the Executive Director and Secretary’s Department), the Law Department (including Claims), and the Information Research Officer. In 1963, the Personnel Department was transferred from the Finance Division to General Government under the supervision of the Executive Director. During the Metro Decade, Council was led by three Chairman: Richard H.G. Bonnycastle (1960-1966), interim Chairman Lawrence E. Ostrander (1966), and Jack Willis (1966-1971). Metro’s first Chairman was appointed by the Provincial Government for a four-year term. As of 1964, Chairmen were elected by Council. The Chairman of Council decided how the Corporation discharged its responsibilities as assigned to them by the Metropolitan Winnipeg Act. The Chairman discharged these responsibilities to the Executive Director: Elswood F. Bole (1960-1965), J.R. McInnes (1965-1969), and D.I. McDonald (1969-1971). The Executive Director, as Metro’s chief administrative officer, was accountable to the Council. Consequently, he ensured that Council’s instructions were carried out. The Executive Director delegated these instructions to Metro’s divisions. In addition to supervising the divisions, Metro’s Solicitor, Secretary and Information Research Officer were also accountable to the Executive Director.

Series consists of reports, correspondence, plans, briefs, petitions, biographical sketches, photographs, statements and speeches, press releases, studies, legal agreements, staff newsletters, pamphlets, union agreements, organizational charts, and Metro Christmas cards. The series documents the functions of individual positions or offices within the General Government structure, as well as the overall organization and administrative functions of the corporation. Records related to personnel activities and Metro events (including its first anniversary) are also documented throughout the series.

Series includes multiple filing systems and maintains the original order of the records based on their creation or collection by General Government offices and staff. Legal agreements were kept in chronological order based on numbers assigned to each agreement. Series includes an incomplete set of agreements from no. 497-1743. Chronological files were kept in the Chairman’s office starting in 1965. These files documented outgoing correspondence and contain related attachments in reverse-chronological order. Reading Files were kept by the Corporation’s secretary and were compiled by month and year, also in reverse-chronological order. The remaining records in the series were compiled into folders based on the office that created or collected them, followed by a sub-heading based on the function to which each folder related (for example, Personnel Department – Biographical Sketches).

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Divisions.

Responsibilities inherited by Metro were undertaken by six divisions under the supervision of the Executive Director of the Corporation. Metro’s Assessment Division was responsible for the preparation and delivery of annual realty, property and business assessment rolls, the re-assessment of properties, the processing of appeals to the Metropolitan Board of Revision and the Municipal Board, as well as all functions previously administered by municipal assessment personnel such as the preparation of annual voter lists, vacancy surveys, property appraisals and population analysis and distribution. The Finance Division oversaw the development of financial plans and objectives, which included maintaining Metro’s account books, issuing financial reports, supervising transactions, and preparing budgets. The Parks and Protection Division inherited functions related to parks (including riverbanks, boulevards and care of trees), the zoo, municipal golf courses, mosquito abatement, and civil defence. The Division further increased park land in the Greater Winnipeg area by 1,000 acres. The Planning Division developed, executed and enforced the Development Plan, and other By-laws and regulations related to zoning, subdivisions, building, electrical and plumbing by-laws. The Streets and Transit Division inherited transit functions from the Greater Winnipeg Transit Commission and was further responsible for the street system, arterial traffic control and bridges. With the assistance of this Division, Metro fulfilled its commitment to build three new bridges in Winnipeg: the St. James Bridge and Underpass, St. Vital Bridge, and Maryland Twin Bridge. Finally, the Waterworks and Waste Disposal Division inherited responsibility for the supply, treatment, storage and distribution of water to area municipalities, which included the maintenance and construction of pumping stations, treatment plants and lagoons.

Series consists of records produced by the divisions, directed to and collected by the Metro Executive Director and/or Chairman of Council. Records include inter-office memos, correspondence, reports, divisional directors’ files, plans, promotional material, financial records, operating and capital budgets, presentations, statistics, news releases, transcripts, surveys, studies and investigations.

Series documents the planning, research, organization and execution of Metro projects and events, administration, the organization and roles of the divisions, communications between the divisions and the Executive Director, as well as Metro’s relationship with municipal and provincial officials, and citizens of the Greater Winnipeg area.

The records were filed in the offices of the Executive Director and Chairman in reverse-chronological order according to the division to which they related. They were subsequently compiled into general divisional folders, or in thematic folders categorized by major projects or functions of each division. The arrangement of the series reflects this original order.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, By-laws.

Series consists of by-laws for the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg. By-laws were passed by the Metropolitan Council. Included in this series are schedules, zoning plans, notices, Canadian Electrical Code manuals and other supporting documents. The series documents the initial take over of municipal functions by Metro, as well as municipal regulations such as those related to traffic, streets, building inspections, zoning, parks, town planning, supply of power, bridges, and water throughout Metro’s existence.

By-laws are arranged numerically and are stapled or folded into pages originally folded into four parts. All by-laws have been flattened for storage and preservation purposes. Staples have been removed only in cases where attachments were stapled shut. Supporting documents are mainly kept with their corresponding by-laws but some plans were separated and stored in map cabinets due to their size and for conservation.

Series consists of by-laws 1-272, 274-704, 706, 708-710, 712-1557, 1559-1651, 1653, 1655-1720, 1723-1729, 1732-1795, 1797-1799, and 1801-1928 inclusively. By-laws missing from this series can be found in lower sub-series with the exception of 273, 1730, and 1731. By-law numbers for 1730-1731 were issued but not used, and the same is suspected for 273 but it is unclear.

The records also consist of 3 sub-series. For a more detailed description, see file list.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Committee Minutes.

Series consists of minutes of standing, special and sub-committees formed under Metro. An index can be found in each volume. Each volume is arranged by committee (if the volume documents multiple committees), and chronologically. The set is numbered from 1 to 18 (including volumes 7A and 11A). The records consist of meetings held and recorded by the following committees:
• Committee on Planning
• Committee on Finance
• Committee on Streets and Transit
• Committee on Transportation
• Committee on Parks and Protection
• Committee on Waterworks and Waste Disposal
• Committee on Assessment
• Committee on Personnel
• Committee on Planning Public Hearings
• Committee on Communication
• Program Policy Committee
• Centennial Committee
• Liaison between Councils of the City of Winnipeg and Metro
• Centennial
• Special Committee Re Other Sources of Revenue
• Special Committee on Pan-American Games
• Special Committee Re Assessment Procedure
• Special Committee Re Metro Development Plan
• Special Committee Re By-law No. 707
• Special Committee Re Land-use Control By-laws
• Special Committee Re Centenary Celebrations Planning
• Special Committee on Transit Review
• Sub-committee on River Property Acquisition.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Regional Government.

Series consists of briefs, plans, organizational charts, reports, statements and correspondence related to the proposal for the reorganization of local government in the Metropolitan area (also referred to as the Greater Winnipeg area), as well as to the Province of Manitoba’s White paper on urban reorganization and the City of Winnipeg Act which led the way to the creation of Unicity in 1972. Files related to Metro Chairman Jack Willis’ mayoral run for the unified City of Winnipeg are also included in the series.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Promotional Materials.

Series consists of pamphlets, brochures and booklets promoting the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg. It documents Metro’s establishment, provision of services, organization, electoral system, operations, history, as well as its first and tenth anniversaries.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Committee Files.

Series consists of reports, correspondence, plans, promotional materials, unbound meeting minutes, and proposals created and kept by Metro committees and sub-committees, as well as liaison committees formed between Metro and external organizations. Series documents activities related to sinking funds, retirement, property, grants administration, development of a Metropolitan police force, Pan-Am Games, Canadian centennial (1967) and provincial centennial (1970).

Most records are arranged by committee or sub-committee and then in reverse-chronological order to reflect the original order as maintained by Metro’s Executive Director and Chairman of Council. As various committees were responsible for centennial planning and shared certain functions, their records were compiled into thematic folders. Consequently, files related to both the provincial and federal centennial maintain this organization, rather than the committee-based organization found throughout the rest of the series.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Metropolitan Winnipeg Act and Procedure By-law.

Series consists of multiple versions of the Metropolitan Winnipeg Act and Procedure By-law of the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg, as well as drafts, revisions, amendments and related reports, correspondence and inter-office memos. The records document Metro’s jurisdiction and boundaries, including the additional zone, and its powers within those boundaries. It also outlines the services Metro provided, its electoral divisions, election processes, organizational structure, terms of office, as well as the powers and responsibilities related to its key functions concerning its financial, assessment, planning, street and transit systems, waterworks and sewage disposal, and parks and civil defence divisions. By-law No. 245 further documents how Metro’s council and committees are to govern their proceedings.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Manitoba Hospital Commission.

Series consists of correspondence, inter-departmental memos, plans, reports, research, proposals, and briefs related to Metro’s regarding Metro’s relationship with the Manitoba Hospital Commission. Records document problems facing Metro area hospitals, such as financial strain and bed shortages, as well as Metro’s provision of grants for hospital projects and capital costs.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

Metro, Comparative Research.

Series consists of correspondence, reports, itineraries, and research concerning the study of municipal government in North America and England. This material includes research on Metropolitan Toronto that was compiled in the years leading up to the creation of the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg. Series documents communications between Metro and other Metropolitan governments (Toronto, Montreal, and Dade County, Florida), Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton, Greater London Council, and the Corporation of the City of London, England. The governance, administration and public perceptions of these municipalities are recorded as well.

Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg

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