Council Notes - April 7th, 2020
Remote Meeting Participation. A motion was passed to allow members of Council to participate in meetings via electronic means if they are unable to attend during this COVID-19 pandemic. Councillor Currie joined the meeting electronically following the vote.
Temporary Tax Payment Due Date. Council has passed all three readings of Bylaw 2244. This bylaw amends the taxation due dates and the subsequent penalty dates for 2020, as directed by the Emergency Management Committee.
- Taxes due – September 30, 2020.
- First penalty run – October 1, 2020.
- Second penalty run – November 1, 2020.
Automatic payments for tax accounts will continue unless the account holder contacts the finance department with further instructions.
Adjustment of Staff Hours. Approval was given for the reduction of staff hours to a 0.9 schedule as part of efforts to mitigate the impacts on ratepayers during the COVID-19 crisis. While this move will have impacts on service levels, the resulting savings would be approximately $540,000 for 2020. Further emergency budget discussions will be happening at the Committee of the Whole meeting of April 14th, 2020.
Council remuneration was also discussed. A motion was put of the floor that effective May 1st, to the end of 2020, that council remuneration equate to the lesser of current policy, or 0.9 of the provincial average. That motion was defeated.
A subsequent motion to reduce all of Council remuneration from current levels by 10% was also defeated.
Utility Bill Payment Deferrals. Council has approved the Emergency Management Advisory Committee recommendation to defer utility bill payments to help out during this time. The following is now in place:
- The Town of Edson will continue sending out utility bills but suspend processing penalties on unpaid utility accounts until the bills due on August 25, 2020.From that date on, penalties will only apply to new balances.
- Give utility customers until the end of 2020 to catch up on the unpaid balances. This allows them to spread the payments over a number of months if necessary.
Automatic payments for utility accounts will continue unless the account holder contacts the finance department with further instructions.
COVID-19 Update. Council received an update on the Town response to the COVID 19 Situation. For details please go to www.edson.ca/covid.
Medical Centre Rent. Council has approved the temporary reduction of rent for the Medical Centre by 50% for the next 3 months as we continue to feel the impacts of the COVID-19 situation.
Home Builders Incentive Plan. Council has approved the newly developed Home Builders Incentive Plan, designed to help with lot sales, specifically in Hillendale Phase II. More details on the plan will be coming out in the coming weeks.
Next meetings - The next Committee of the Whole Meeting is scheduled for April 14th, 2020 at 7:00 pm in Council Chambers. The next Council Meeting is scheduled for April 21st, 2020 at 7:00 pm
*Please note that Council Meetings will be closed to the public until further notice. Residents are encouraged to review agendas prior to the meeting and submit any questions/concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org. Meetings will be live streamed at www.edson.ca/live and through the Town of Edson YouTube Channel.
App users can watch the video HERE