At the turn of the century, the local city, town, and village governments of the day believed it was necessary to have an organization through which they could, on a collective basis, express their needs and desires for legislative and financial services, to the provincial government.
In 1906, the Union of Saskatchewan Municipalities (the name would later change to SUMA) held their first convention. Mayor Peter McAra, Jr., of the City of Regina, was SUMA's first president.
Recognized since 1906 as the collective voice of Saskatchewan municipalities, SUMA represents the interests of municipal governments on policy and program matters within provincial jurisdiction.
The Association has been in continuous operation since that time, serving the needs of member councils by maintaining and improving the strength of local government.
In 1967, the board of directors believed that it was necessary to strengthen SUMA and to empower the association to engage in activities that would enable us to better serve our members. An act of the Saskatchewan Legislature was passed in April of 1967 to incorporate the association and to vest powers which would enable it to more effectively meet its objectives.
SUMA's legacy has continued to grow since its inception more than a century ago. You can find more details on our history in two books (The Urban Age, and The New Urban Age), and keep up with what we are doing now through Municipal Update and Municipal Voice.
SUMA’s Mission, Vision, and Values
SUMA is representing Saskatchewan's hometowns.
SUMA is representing Saskatchewan’s hometowns through advocacy, support, savings, and by providing expertise. We are committed to our members ability to create and maintain thriving, sustainable communities.
Independence: We believe in protecting strong local autonomy
Member-focused: We are a member-driven organization and consider the interests of all urban sectors prior to making decisions
Accountability: We are accountable for our actions internally and externally
Innovative: We believe in providing innovative and value-driven programs and services to our members
Transparency: We take a fact-based approach to public policy
Respectful: We respect each other, our members, and others that we work with
After every municipal election, once the full Board is in place, SUMA creates a strategic plan for the term. It is our guiding star, setting the priorities for our work on behalf of members and within the Association. The strategic plan is a critical part of SUMA’s governance. This high-level view of our work helps us be sure we are moving in the right direction.
In the 2021-25 Strategic Plan, we reiterated our core functions, tweaked our mission, vision and values, and set out five strategic priorities.
Bylaws and Governance
SUMA is governed by a board of directors made up of elected officials from various regions within the province and the executive committee which represents by sector through the President, Vice-President Towns, Vice-President Cities, Vice-President Villages, Resort Villages and Northern Municipalities, and an Executive Member from either Saskatoon or Regina.
SUMA's bylaws set out our structure and method of operation. The bylaws specifically provide for a periodic review to ensure that the organizational structure continues to meet the association’s goals and objectives.
SUMA engages in partnerships that provide benefits to member municipalities. Some of our current partners:
Saskatchewan Municipal Awards (SMA)
Municipal Leadership Development Program (MLDP)
Urban Municipal Administrators’ Association of Saskatchewan (UMAAS)
Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association (SPRA)
Saskatchewan Seniors Mechanism (SSM)