Coun­cil Notes

From the reg­u­lar meet­ing of Mon­day, April 18, 2016

The Drumheller Mail - - SPORTS -

CAO Ray Ro­manetz pre­sented the 2016 Pro­vin­cial Bud­get Anal­y­sis done by Al­berta Ur­ban Mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties As­so­ci­a­tion.

No­table changes are that the provincewide Mu­nic­i­pal Sus­tain­abil­ity Ini­tia­tive (MSI) fund shows an over­all $50 mil­lion re­duc­tion com­pared to a $50 mil­lion in­crease which was pledged, the bud­get be­ing $846 mil­lion for 2016 and is bud­geted to re­main at that amount for three years. MSI fund­ing for Drumheller has been re­duced by $119,150 over last year. Also, the Al­berta Com­mu­nity Part­ner­ships grant was cut 50 per cent from $40 mil­lion to $20 mil­lion, the re­port call­ing this "con­cern­ing as it im­pairs re­gional col­lab­o­ra­tion," and makes the ap­pli­ca­tion process more com­pet­i­tive.

Di­rec­tor of Cor­po­rate Ser­vices Barb Miller re­ported on the 2016/17 Pro­vin­cial Bud­get's im­pact on Drumheller. Car­bon Tax in­creases will see a car­bon tax of $20/tonne im­ple­ment as of Jan­uary 1, 2017 and then in­crese to $30/tonne on Jan­uary 1, 2018. This equates to roughly $1.01/GJ in 2017 and $1.517/GJ in 2018. Nat­u­ral gas is es­ti­mated to in­crease costs to the town of $35,000 in 2017 and $52,000 in 2018, based on the town's an­nual con­sump­tion as the car­bon tax is ap­plied at the point where fuel is burnt. Elec­tric­ity pric­ing is in­su­lated from the neg­a­tive im­pact of the car­bon tax un­til the end of 2020 when the town's fi­nal con­tract ex­pires.

Tax on gaso­line is set to in­crease by 4.5 cents to 17.5 cents a litre due to the car­bon tax levy, and this is es­ti­mated to cost an ad­di­tion $2,500. Tax on diesel fuel is in­creas­ing by 5.4 cents to 18.4 cents a litre and es­ti­mated to add an ad­di­tional $3,780 an­nu­ally.

Ed­u­ca­tion Tax will in­crease provin­cially by 6.7 per­cent. The 2016 res­i­den­tial/farm­land Al­berta School Foun­da­tion Fund req­ui­si­tion rate will de­crease from $2.50 to $2.48 per $1,000 equal­ized as­sess­ment and the non-res­i­den­tial rate will de­crease from $3.67 to $3.64 per $1,000 equal­ized as­sess­ment. Drumheller's to­tal ed­u­ca­tion tax req­ui­si­tion amount for 2016 de­creased by $18,820 to $2,702,221 from $2,721,041.

Coun­cil moved the sec­ond and third read­ings of By­law 6.6 which made changes to the Solid Waste Man­age­ment by­law adding a num­ber of con­tra­ven­tion penal­ties which could be is­sued by Drumheller Land­fill staff to in­di­vid­u­als who vi­o­late by­laws at the land­fill. The amend­ments give Drumheller Land­fill em­ploy­ees and By­law Ser­vices the tools to man­age sit­u­a­tions of bad be­hav­ior or dis­obe­di­ence of laws at the land­fill.

Di­rec­tor of Com­mu­nity Ser­vices Paul Sal­va­tore pre­sented coun­cil with a Re­quest for De­ci­sion in ap­point­ing Heather Far­quhar­son of East Coulee to the Her­itage, Arts and Cul­ture Steer­ing Com­mit­tee, which was unan­i­mously passed by coun­cil. Far­quhar­son has worked with the East Coulee School Mu­seum and has a back­ground in the per­form­ing arts.

Coun­cil­lor Tara McMil­lan re­ported on the Val­ley Bus So­ci­ety which re­cently held its An­nual Gen­eral Meet­ing. User num­bers last year av­er­aged 1,108 peo­ple per month, av­er­ag­ing 244 trips to the hospi­tal for vis­its and care, as well as 19 char­ter trips a month, which make up about half of the VBS' rev­enue, the other half be­ing fixed bus runs. A new bus was pur­chased last year and re­pairs were made on a num­ber of buses. A num­ber of VBS users who at­tended the meet­ing ex­pressed the de­sire for week­end ser­vices, but McMil­lan re­ported that un­less user num­bers in­crease there are not enough funds at the mo­ment.

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