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Coming Up: January 15th

Council is meeting next Monday. Below, I've listed what we will be discussing. Although I have questions I intend to ask about a few topics, I do not currently intend to vote against any recommendations being made.

As with all my posts, any opinions and errors belong to me and me alone.

You can see the agenda and supporting materials by clicking here.

Hughes Lake Area Structure Plan

We are looking at a high level plan for a large tract of newly-annexed land west of the airport. This plan calls for an Eco-Industrial Park, commercial nodes, and industrial development. If this is adopted, existing agricultural and residential uses will be allowed to continue and steps will be taken (ex: buffers of empty land) to minimize impact from new commercial and industrial builds. However, future development would be limited to the business and industrial uses outlined in the plan.

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Borrowing for Bear Creek Outdoor Pool and Community Knowledge Campus Grandstands

These projects were both approved and begun during the last Council term with debt as a funding source. However, we don't draw debt until it is actually needed to make payments. Therefore, bylaws to take out loans are only being passed by Council now.

For Bear Creek Pool, the total debt is anticipated to be $5,000,000 and is projected to cost $265,161 per year for 30 years.

For the Grandstands, the total debt is anticipated to be $3,572,911 and is projected to cost $189,480 per year for 30 years.

Together, these projects will bring the City's debt to approximately $139,000,000 million. The City's legal debt limit is approximately $267,500,000.


It is recommended that Councillor Pilat be appointed as an alternate member of the Grande Spirit Foundation Board to attend when Councillor Blackburn is not available.

It is recommended that Councillor Blackburn be appointed as an alternate member of the Regional Emergency Management Committee to attend when I am not available.

It is recommended that Councillor O'Toole be appointed to the Subdivision and Development Appeal Board.


Homelessness Initiative Contracts

It is recommended that we award the following four-year contracts to bidders who won a Request For Proposal (RFP) process:

  • Centralized Assessment to the YMCA for $1,552,680. This provides a single point of entry for struggling individuals to be assessed and connected to relevant programs.
  • Case Management Team A to the Canadian Mental Health Association for $2,240,000 and Case Management Team B to HIV North Society for $2,238,224. These teams provide intensive care to high needs individuals for 12-18 months. They help individuals find and maintain housing. Each team has 5 workers who each have capacity to work with 15 individuals.
  • Rapid Rehousing to Centerpoint Facilitation Inc. for $1,583,348. This program helps [relatively] lower need individuals find housing. People are generally in this program for 4-6 months.

All of these contracts will be funded with provincial money given through Outreach Support Services. This money is only allowed to be used for homelessness initiatives.


It is recommended that Council approve the purchase of four Graders for $1,354,000 and two Backhoes for $363,000.

Business Revitalization Zone Budget

The City collects a Business Revitalization Zone tax on behalf of the Downtown Association. This year, the proposed budget is $356,597. We aren't actually discussing this budget on Monday. Instead, it is recommended that we discuss this budget at our March 12 meeting and direct administration to mail a letter to effected businesses with this time and the proposed budget. This notification process is demanded by City Bylaw.


Well Equipment Tax Bylaw

This recommended bylaw will allow us to levy a tax on any wells drilled within City limits. The total tax levied depends on the well's depth, is set by the province, and is typically between $4000 and $10,000. It is meant to pay for the damage drilling activity does to roads.

Alberta Community Partnership Grant

It is recommended that we support a joint application between us, Sexsmith, Wembley, and Horse Lake First Nation to apply for a provincial grant. This grant would allow us to hire consulting assistance to potentially develop a regional Intermunicipal Development Plan and Intermunicipal Collaboration Framework. These are agreements we are provincially mandated to create with the County and which we are allowed to enter into with other municipalities. They layout how we will work together on land use planning and program and service delivery.

That is all the business currently scheduled for Monday night. As always, I welcome your thoughts, questions, and feedback.

Thanks for reading!