White­court Town Coun­cil briefs

The McLeod River Post - - News -

Sept. 29 meet­ing

White­court Town Coun­cil has adopted Phase 1 of the Sport­field Mas­ter Plan. The Plan will help guide in­vest­ments over the next 15 to 20 years to meet both cur­rent and fu­ture out­door recre­ation needs of our com­mu­nity. De­vel­op­ment of the Sport­field Mas­ter Plan in­cluded sig­nif­i­cant con­sul­ta­tion with user groups, Coun­cil Com­mit­tees, students, com­mu­nity part­ners, and the gen­eral pub­lic. The Town of White­court thanks all of those who con­trib­uted time and pro­vided feed­back through­out the de­vel­op­ment of this Plan. The Sport­field Mas­ter Plan fo­cuses on three main ar­eas: Ro­tary Park, Gra­ham Acres, and the new Com­mu­nity Learn­ing Cam­pus (near the new Ecole St. Joseph School). Phase 2 of the Sport­field Mas­ter Plan will pro­vide de­tailed cost­ing and will rec­om­mend an or­der for com­ple­tion of the pro­posed projects. The plan can be viewed on our web­site at www.white­court. ca.

The Stark Sport So­ci­ety is ap­ply­ing to the Com­mu­nity Fa­cil­ity En­hance­ment Pro­gram for a grant to com­plete a 3,000 square foot ad­di­tion to the Scott Safety Cen­tre, as well as roof and ceil­ing re­place­ment. White­court Town Coun­cil sup­ports the project, and White­court will be pro­vid­ing the So­ci­ety sup­port for its ap­pli­ca­tion. If the grant ap­pli­ca­tion is suc­cess­ful, the Stark Sport So­ci­ety is re­quest­ing a $400,000 con­tri­bu­tion from the Town of White­court. The Town had pre­vi­ously com­mit­ted to re­plac­ing the ceil­ing and roof in 2018 at a bud­geted cost of $175,000, and the re­main­ing $225,000 would then be re­cov­ered by the Town through ei­ther a loan or lease agree­ment with the White­court Wolver­ines.

Coun­cil ap­proved first read­ing of By­law 1529, a by­law to au­tho­rize the lend­ing of funds to the Com­mu­nity Lunch­box So­ci­ety. The So­ci­ety re­quested the loan so that it could pay down the pur­chase and ren­o­va­tion of the sup­port cen­tre lo­cated at 4904 52 Av­enue.

Ef­fec­tive Jan­uary 1, 2018, White­court will be fol­low­ing new guide­lines in re­gards to off-site levies. The new the­ory and method­ol­ogy for col­lect­ing off-site levies was adopted after an ex­ten­sive re­view, and nu­mer­ous con­sul­ta­tions with area de­vel­op­ers, builders, and ratepay­ers. Off-Site Levies are growth re­lated im­prove­ment charges a mu­nic­i­pal­ity may col­lect from de­vel­op­ers un­der the Mu­nic­i­pal Gov­ern­ment Act (MGA) as a cost re­cov­ery tool to help fund “off-site” in­fras­truc­ture projects. Closer to the im­ple­men­ta­tion date, ad­ver­tise­ments and in­for­ma­tion sheets will be pub­lished in­form­ing ratepay­ers of the process. Watch for de­tails on www.white­court.ca in the com­ing weeks.

Amend­ments have been made to the Land Use By­law and Mu­nic­i­pal De­vel­op­ment Plan as a re­sult of the down­town park­ing study that was con­ducted last year. The study was ini­ti­ated to de­ter­mine the long and short term needs of park­ing in the down­town area. The study de­ter­mined that there is suf­fi­cient park­ing in the down­town to ac­com­mo­date this change in pol­icy and by­law for up to 25 years be­fore ad­di­tional park­ing is war­ranted. One of the most sig­nif­i­cant changes in­cludes the cre­ation of a Down­town Park­ing Over­lay District” for the down­town core area to specif­i­cally iden­tify ar­eas where the Town would pro­vide park­ing as an over­all ben­e­fit to the com­mu­nity. Coun­cil will be dis­cussing the pos­si­bil­ity of park­ing levy re­funds at a meet­ing in the new year.

Sag­itawah RV Park sub­mit­ted an ap­pli­ca­tion for an ex­emp­tion to its cur­rent op­er­at­ing pe­riod for 2017/2018 to al­low for tem­po­rary ac­com­mo­da­tions for peo­ple work­ing on lo­cal pipe­line projects, as well as the ma­jor shut­down at the White­court Biomass Plant. Coun­cil has de­ferred the item to the next Reg­u­lar Meet­ing of Coun­cil for fur­ther in­for­ma­tion.

White­court has sub­mit­ted an ex­pres­sion of in­ter­est to par­tic­i­pate in For­tisAl­berta’s Street­light LED Con­ver­sion ini­tia­tive. If ap­proved by the Al­berta Util­i­ties Com­mis­sion, For­tis will con­vert ap­prox­i­mately 790 street­lights within our com­mu­nity. Con­vert­ing the street­lights would bring con­sump­tion, main­te­nance and en­vi­ron­men­tal ben­e­fits.

Coun­cil has set the For­tisAl­berta Fran­chise Fee rate for 2018 at 2.55 per cent - a de­crease from 2017. Ev­ery year Coun­cil has the op­por­tu­nity to re­view the fran­chise fee charged for the de­liv­ery of elec­tric­ity to town res­i­dents. The fran­chise fee is paid in ex­change for giv­ing For­tis the exclusive right to sup­ply power dis­tri­bu­tion in Town. The av­er­age fran­chise fee rate for all mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties is 7.87 per cent.

Coun­cil has ap­proved first read­ing of By­law 1531 which pro­vides for the re­newal of the ATCO Gas Fran­chise Agree­ment.

Coun­cil has also set the ATCO Gas Fran­chise fee rate for 2018 at 20.59 per cent - a de­crease from 2017. Ev­ery year Coun­cil has the op­por­tu­nity to re­view the fran­chise fee charged for the de­liv­ery of gas to town res­i­dents.

Due to the up­com­ing mu­nic­i­pal elec­tion, Coun­cil has can­celled its Poli­cies and Pri­or­i­ties Com­mit­tee meet­ing sched­uled for Oc­to­ber 16.

The new White­court Town Coun­cil will be sworn in at an Oaths of Of­fice Cer­e­mony on Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 21.

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