Council Notes - March 15th, 2016
Offsite Levy Public Hearing. Council heard from a local resident that objects to the way offsite levies are implemented and the burden it puts on developers. Council was asked to find other ways to fund the projects to help remove some of the cost barriers for future development. Mayor Pasychny explained that, while Council was sympathetic to the concerns, taxpayers should not be the ones paying for development. It was also mentioned that the Town doesn’t have the financial or borrowing capabilities to frontend some of the larger projects. The financial burden was addressed in the changes proposed to the bylaw, removing storm water from the current offsite levy system to be dealt with at the development stage. In some cases this reduced offsite levies substantially, especially for the larger landowners. Following the hearing, Council passed second and third reading of the updated bylaw.
Homeless Presentation. Council received a presentation from Kristie Gomuwka regarding the Housing Plus program and a potential feasibility study for some form of homeless support housing in Edson. There is no commitment that a project needs to go ahead at the end of the study, but in order to qualify for the study the group requires Council support. Council passed a motion to direct Administration to work with the group to find an appropriate piece of land to be committed for the project. There is no obligation to proceed with the project if the Council does not deem it to be in the best interest of the residents of Edson.
Land Use Bylaw Fines. Council gave final reading to Bylaw No. 2176, establishing fines and penalties for the contravention of the Town of Edson Land Use Bylaw. Fines are always considered a last resort, but the new bylaw established set fines to deal with problem areas. The fines start at $500 for a first offence, $750 for a second offence and $1000 for a third offence.
ATCO Franchise Fees. Council has given first reading to renew the ATCO Franchise Agreement. The agreement has been in place since 1956 and while there were a few changes, the intent remains the same. Council has also decided to leave the rate unchanged at 20%.
Planning Fees. Policy D-P-12 has been adopted by Council to allow for the waving of planning fees for organizations that qualify for property tax exemption.
Deep Utilities Upgrades. Administration has been directed to engage High Mountain Hoe Service Ltd. for the execution of the Deep Utilities Upgrade project at the 2014 rates and the negotiated cost estimate for out of scope works for a total of $97,848.13.
Waste Management Authority Budgets. Council has adopted the 2016 Operating and Capital Budgets for the West Yellowhead Regional Waste Management Authority. The Authority includes the municipalities of Hinton, Jasper, Edson and Yellowhead County and all four Councils are required to sign off on the budgets annually.
Next meetings - A Committee of the Whole Meeting is planned for March 22nd, 2016 at 10:00am in the Council Chambers of the Edson Civic Building. The next Council Meeting will be April 5th, 2016 at 7:30pm.