Council Notes - December 17th, 2013

Council Notes - December 17th, 2013

2014 Interim Capital and Operating Budget. Council has approved the 2014 Interim Capital and Operating Budgets as presented. The Interim Budget uses a proposed 3.0% municipal tax increase. This rate may change at the final budget in the spring, depending on 2013 assessments and a review of expenditures. The actual taxes owed by a property owner is dependent on their property assessment. Residents with a lower assessment could potentially pay less in taxes, even with a tax percentage increase.

The 2014 Capital budget includes the annual Equipment Replacement Program and an allowance for the 2014 Road Rehab Program. The Capital budget also includes some ongoing projects from 2013, including the park for Hillendale Phase II, the CT Disinfection and Chlorine Analyzer System for the wells, the Meter Replacement Program and the completion of the Wastewater Bulk Station. Some new projects include the purchase of a new Snow blower for the airport and a pathway in Centennial Park to service the Pavilion.

There was also a major project in 2013 that is not carrying over to 2014. In the final budget for 2013 there was an approval for the Wastewater Treatment Plant with the understanding that the Province would provide 36.95% of the cost through the Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership provincial grant. The funding for this grant has since been cut by 50% and only previously approved projects would continue to be funded. Without the support from the Province this project is now on hold. In its place the West End Sewer Line project is being increased. In the 2013 budget, $500,000 was allocated to do some preliminary work. This has now been increased to the full project cost of $8,400,000. This Sewer Line will service land on the west end of Edson, opening it up for commercial/industrial and residential subdivision and development.

A budget recap is attached beolow and will also be posted on our website at www.edson.ca/departments/finance-administration

2014 Operating and Capital Interim Budget recap

Community Garden Delegation. A group looking to build a Community Garden in Edson gave a brief presentation to Council regarding their plans. The group is being assisted by the Edson and District Recycling Society for the start up. While the group has money to start building in the spring, they’re asking the Town to provide some land. Council accepted the presentation for information and directed administration to look further into possible locations and to bring it back to Council when a site is selected.

Land Use Amendment. Council has given first reading to Bylaw No. 2138 to rezone 5020 11th Avenue from R-1B to R-2 designation to allow for a current home to be demolished and duplexes to be built on the lots. A public hearing has been set for January 21st, 2014 at 7:30 P.M. in Council Chambers.

Waste Management. Council has approved the West Yellowhead Regional Waste Management Authority 2014 Operating Budget as presented. The budget came in at $1,160,000, up from $948,000 in 2013, mostly due to a larger transfer to the Capital Reserve for future expansion.

Subdivision Application. Council has approved a subdivision of land at 79th street and Glenwood Drive into two lots. The north portion will continue to be used for a welding shop and the south portion is planned to be sold. The subdivision was approved with 20 conditions to be met.

Development Permit. Council has accepted an application for an existing electronic sign at 5140 – 2nd Avenue (Sundowner Inn). Fees were doubled as the construction took place before development permit was given and it was noted that the sign has been reprogrammed to better suit the Land Use Bylaw and to cause less of a distraction to drivers. The permit was approved with 19 conditions attached, including brightness controls, a proper land survey, and permissions from Alberta Transportation as required.

Standing Offer Agreements. Following the Tender openings, Council has approved the following SOA’s.

  • Fuel - Max Fuel Distribution (Petro Canada)
  • Hauling of Waste Compaction Trailer – Dave Kehler Trucking Ltd.
  • Sand – McPhee Construction
  • Gravel - McPhee Construction
  • Pitrun – McPhee Construction
  • Winter Gravel - Jade Oilfield Maintenance Company
  • Stockroom Services – Northern Metallic Sales

FCSS Agreement. Council has ratified the new Family and Community Support Services Agreement between the Town of Edson and Yellowhead County. Some changes in the agreement include, the language now mirroring the Revenue Sharing and Recreation Agreement signed in early 2013, the new cost share formula was changed to reflect a share of operating costs rather than a share of the County FCSS grant, the boundary map is now the same as the map used for the RSA Agreement, and the term of the agreement is for 15 years ending in 2029.

Leisure Centre Pool Fees. Council has approved some fee increases for the Edson Swimming Pool with most scheduled to take effect January 2nd, 2014. The lane rental rate increase will take effect July 1st, 2014. A chart outlining the fee increases is attached.

Community Services Appointments. Council approved the following appointments to the Community Services Board.

  • Jacqui Currie – 3 year term ending October 31, 2016
  • Rita Hauk – partial term ending October 31, 2014
  • John Walker – partial term ending October 31, 2014

Community Needs Assessment. Council has authorized FCSS staff to hire a consulting firm to conduct a Community Social Needs Assessment for Edson and surrounding area in 2014 with a cost not to exceed $35,000.

Auditor Appointment. Council has accepted the proposal of Mergeart, Barford, Williams and Joly as presented and has appointed that firm as the Town of Edson’s external auditors for the 2013 year, pursuant to Section 280 of the Municipal Government Act.

Bulk Water. Town Council has revised Schedule “A” for the Bulk Water Bylaw. As of March 1, 2014 the price of Bulk Water will increase from $6.50 to $7.50 per cubic metre and the price of Bulk Wastewater will go from $2.00 to $3.00 per cubic metre.

Utility Rates. Town Council has revised Schedule “A” for the Utility Bylaw. As of March 1, 2014 the price of water for both residential and non-residential will increase from $1.03 to $1.06 per cubic metre and sewer rates will increase from $0.72 to $0.74 per cubic metre.

Natural Gas Contract. During the last meeting Council had agreed to renew the Town of Edson’s natural gas contract with Enmax for a period of 5 years at a fixed rate of approximately $3.84/Gj, based on the rate at the time of signing. At the time of signing the rates had actually gone up slightly to $4.00/Gj. The contract was brought back to Council and approved at that rate which will be locked in until December 31, 2018. This is still a considerable savings as the current contract was based on a block price of $8.78/Gj

TELUS Upgrades. Council has agreed to enter into an agreement with TM Mobile (TELUS) for infrastructure improvements in the Town of Edson.

The next Council Meeting is scheduled for January 14th at 1:00pm in the Council Chambers of the Edson Civic Building.