Council Meeting: September 28, 2015

Council Meeting: September 28, 2015

Hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful Fall weekend here in St. Albert. A 7 a.m. hockey practice this morning was the official sign for me that Fall has indeed arrived. Below is my weekly look at what’s on the Agenda for this week’s Council meeting. I have also included some information regarding the upcoming Federal Election that I thought might be of interest. Enjoy! 

Community Sustainability FrameworkThe Community Sustainability Committee made three recommendations to Council in relation to the approval and implementation of the Community Vision and Pillars of Sustainability — also known as the Community Sustainability Framework (CSF) – including creating a Council Policy and embedding the CSF into the Municipal Development Plan (MDP). Administration is providing advice on the best way to address these two recommendations including an update of the Municipal Development Plan.

Service Level Benchmarking Project UpdateThe report provides the project update for the first phase of the Service Level Benchmarking Project, one of the three corporate-level continuous improvement projects that were selected for the 2015 Continuous Improvement Review Program.

Riel Park Former Landfill Remediation Final Report: This report is intended to provide Council with a summary of the Riel Park Remediation Project which was completed between the years 2005 – 2015.

Council Policy C-P&E-02 – Capital Project Management FrameworkCouncil Policy C-P&E-02 Capital Project Management was approved in 2006. The purpose of this Council Policy was to provide governance oversight to the City of St. Albert’s capital project from conception to completion. Administration’s project management practices have evolved since 2006 and the Policy is now dated and not wholly reflective of the governance of the capital project management framework throughout the organization. In addition, numerous new and revised bylaws and policies have been approved by Council since the last revision of Council Policy C-P&E-02 that necessitate updates to the policy.

Council Policy C-CS-17 Youth DevelopmentCouncil approved the Social Master Plan in April of 2013 and the Social Development Policy in September of 2014. Council received a draft of the Youth Development Policy on July 6, 2015; the Youth Development Policy is intended to augment the Social Development and Social Master Plan policies specific to youth.

Digital Displays (Electronic Video Messaging Signs)There continues to be growing interest in the use of digital displays in St. Albert, and complaints about the current Land Use Bylaw prohibiting such signs from local businesses and the sign industry. This report provides background on options for the regulation of digital displays and is seeking Council direction.

Public Hearing (5PM):

Bylaw 29/2015, Amendment 1 to Bylaw 27/2015 – South Riel Area Structure Plan & Bylaw 30/2015, Amendment 126 to Land Use Bylaw 9/2005 Redistricting (Great West Life Amendments)

The purpose of this report is to outline the proposed:

  • Amendment of the South Riel Area Structure Plan to change the future land designations for 7 City Annex from Commercial to Industrial/Commercial, and Industrial/Commercial to Commercial and Commercial to Stormwater Management Facility.
  • Amendment to the Land Use Bylaw 9/2005 to redistrict 7 City Annex from: Regional Commercial (RC) to Commercial and Industrial Service (CIS); Commercial and Industrial Service (CIS) to Regional Commercial (RC); and a small portion from Regional Commercial (RC) to Park (P).
  • Council approval of the South Riel Commercial & Industrial Design Guidelines

Council Motions:

2015 Utility Capital Contribution Adjustment: Councillor Hughes has provided the following notice of motion: “That the 2016 utility capital contribution component is adjusted to reflect a 10-year capital plan that includes both the 35% of the 85% of MSI funding allocation for utilities and the addition of the 10 year historical average of utility federal funding, and bring to council an amended utility model policy by the end of Q4 of 2015 that reflects this change to the funding formula.”

Council Policy C-CC-03 Council Remuneration & Expense Reimbursement: On August 24, 2015, a draft version of the revised Council Remuneration & Expense Reimbursement Policy was presented to Council. Council members were invited to bring forward any notices of motion related to this policy. These motions have been placed on the consent agenda and Council will have the ability to remove any individual motion should they wish to debate it. There is also a staff report relative to this policy update.

So, that’s the Agenda for Monday’s meeting. A few other things I want to make people aware of:

  • On Saturday, the St. Albert Gazette ran an article about municipal concerns in the Federal Election campaign. This is an important issue as the Federal Government is in a position to influence numerous key issues including infrastructure, affordable housing, transit and more. You can read the article here.  One point of clarification, while the article states that Council has identified two commitments we are looking for, those are actually just examples of issues that I mentioned as being of interest and importance to St. Albert. Council has not passed any specific motions relative to the Federal Election campaign. (UPDATE: Please see the comment section below for some clarification regarding this part of the post). 
  • If you’re interested in learning more about the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Election Platform, including some suggested questions for your candidates, I would encourage you to check out this website. It also includes a Policy Tracker that summarizes commitments that the various parties have made regarding municipal issues. In the interest of fairness, since the Policy Tracker does not cover independent candidates, here’s a link to the Issues Page for Brent Rathgeber.
  • On Wednesday, I will be moderating an All Candidates Forum that will be hosted at the St. Albert Public Library beginning at 7pm. Hope to see some of you there.

(Note: The photo in this week’s post is an old abandoned car that I stumbled upon while out walking near Big Lake).

2 Comments

  1. Hi Tim,

    I actually spoke to Mayor Crouse about municipal issues for this article as well. He is the one who informed me that St. Albert has taken a stance on affordable housing funding from the federal government. As for transit, council passed a motion to advocate for a national transit strategy on August 24. The motion was brought forward by Coun. Wes Brodhead.

    http://www.stalbertgazette.com/article/20150828/SAG0801/308289996/-1/sag/putting-public-transit-on-the-electoral-map

    Thanks,

    Michelle Ferguson
    Reporter | St. Albert Gazette

  2. Hi Michelle. Thanks for your comment. You are correct, we did pass a motion to allow Councillor Brodhead to work with CUTA on raising the issue of a National Transit Strategy. With respect to housing, there was a motion passed about a year and a half ago related to the FCM Housing Crunch Campaign. I wasn’t thinking of that directly in the context of the Federal Election, but more of an ongoing issue for communities. I wasn’t thinking about those motions when I wrote my blog post, and I likely should have been.

    I am always cautious to not speak on behalf of Council as I know that there are differences of opinions regarding what Council’s advocacy role is during elections. My clarification was in no way meant to be a critique of your article or to suggest that you were wrong (you weren’t), I was just being careful as I suspect some of my colleagues would differ on what we should be advocating for (or if we should be advocating at all) during an election.

    I do apologize if I created the appearance that your article was incorrect, that was not my intent. I was not thinking directly of those motions, particularly the Housing Motion and you are correct to have pointed them out. I appreciate you providing me a chance to respond and don’t hesitate to contact me directly in the future.

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