City Coun­cil to re­ceive up­date


City Coun­cil will re­ceive an up­date on Lethbridge’s fi­nan­cial po­si­tion at to­day’s coun­cil meet­ing when the City’s au­dited re­port for 2017 is tabled for dis­cus­sion. High­lights in the re­port in­clude a con­sol­i­dated an­nual un­re­stricted sur­plus of $2.6-mil­lion in 2017 and a $9.1-mil­lion in­crease in land sales (for a to­tal of $25.3-mil­lion) over the 2016 year.

Most of these land sales oc­curred in the Sher­ring In­dus­trial Park ($10.1-mil­lion), the Cross­ings sub­di­vi­sion ($2.2-mil­lion) and the Sun Ridge sub­di­vi­sion ($1.9-mil­lion).

Also on the agenda for to­day’s meet­ing, coun­cil must de­cide whether or not to push for fur­ther grant fund­ing to take part in the Smart Cities Chal­lange be­fore the April 24 dead­line. The Smart Cities Chal­lenge is an In­fra­struc­ture Canada com­pe­ti­tion that awards $5 mil­lion, $10 mil­lion, or $50 mil­lion to com­mu­ni­ties to im­prove lives of their cit­i­zens through the use of data and/or tech­nol­ogy.

Lethbridge is ap­ply­ing for a $10-mil­lion prize. If suc­cess­ful in the ini­tial ap­pli­ca­tion, Lethbridge will be one of five com­mu­ni­ties awarded $250,000 to fur­ther de­velop their ap­pli­ca­tion. Two of those five com­mu­ni­ties will be awarded $10 mil­lion to im­ple­ment their ideas.

City Coun­cil has also post­poned fur­ther de­bate on the Canada Wide Sci­ence Fair ap­pli­ca­tion.

The City was asked to com­mit $160,000 in fund­ing to help bring the fair to Lethbridge in 2020 at the coun­cil meet­ing of April 3. How­ever, the city man­ager re­vealed coun­cil has al­ready spent all the fund­ing al­lo­cated in the Ma­jor Com­mu­nity Event Hosting Grant budget for event at­trac­tion to the city.

Coun­cil would have to pull ad­di­tional funds from other ar­eas of the city budget to ob­tain the $160,000. Upon hear­ing this, coun­cil voted to table dis­cus­sion on the Canada Wide Sci­ence Fair un­til to­day. This week’s agenda now says dis­cus­sion has been post­poned again un­til a fu­ture meet­ing.

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