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M.D. of Taber regular council meeting briefs

Posted on June 15, 2023 by Vauxhall Advance

By Heather Cameron
Vauxhall Advance
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The following are selected briefs from the regular meeting of the M.D. of Taber Council held on May 23.

Recognition to Firefighter Service

Council gave recognition to firefighters in M.D. of Taber Fire Service for finding time in their schedules to respond to the calls for help in the Drayton Valley and Peace River areas. Council expressed their appreciation for the firefighters taking the time to go help out with those wildfires and also expressed thoughts and prayers for everyone affected by the fires in Northern Alberta.

Taber Food Bank Community Food Drive

Council discussed the Taber Food Bank Community Food Drive on June 6. Council also discussed that the Food Bank is looking for help with the community garden, specifically with weed picking. Pressures on the Taber Food Bank, Council said, have grown almost exponentially and it serves not just the Taber area, but also Vauxhall and the surrounding area. They implored anyone who is available to help out to contact the Taber Food Bank.

RCMP Officer Report

Council said that the Taber-Vauxhall RCMP detachment responded to or received a total of 222 calls for service in April 2022. 

190 of those calls, Council said, were in Taber. Three immediate roadside suspensions for alcohol-related stops were issued. 41 9-1-1 hang-up calls were dealt with. 23 criminal record checks and four finger printing checks were conducted. In terms of patrols, Council said, there were 71 patrols in the hamlets of Enchant, Grassy Lake, and Hays. 

There were also 170 patrols carried out in the campgrounds of the M.D. of Taber. 

72 tickets, Council said, were written in the Taber-Vauxhall detachment and on top of that, the Integrated Traffic Unit helped with the writing of 25 additional tickets, leading to a total of 93 tickets written for the month of April.

Council also had some notes from the Detachment Commander regarding activity in the month of April. 

The detachment laid charges in seven criminal investigations, responded to three complaints of family violence and laid charges in all three cases. In all three cases, Council said, they ensured that the appropriate resources were provided to the victims.

The detachment also participated in the Sports Hall of Fame Induction ceremony from two individuals from the community and also held the tour for newly-arrived immigrants to Canada so that they would feel safe when interacting with police.

Councilor Hildebrandt gave a motion to receive the RCMP report and the motion was passed unanimously.

CAO Report Highlight

During his report to Council, M.D. of Taber CAO Arlos Crofts spoke about how the Grassy Lake residential subdivision design is 75 per cent complete and environmental approvals, specifically ones with respect to wildlife and wetlands, are currently being worked through before the project can proceed. 

Update on Water Reservoirs at Vauxhall

Council discussed that the West Reservoir has been filled up and actually pre-treated with the new pre-treatment system that is in place. The water from the reservoir, Council said, is being fed through the plant now and because it’s new water, the plant has to make adjustments to treat the new water differently from what was being treated previously. 

Council also said that they had to service the system through the East Reservoir. The West Reservoir, once full, is now currently being emptied and will be cleaned and later refilled and pre-treated. All of this, Council said, will take time. 

Both reservoirs will eventually receive the pre-treatment, Council said, and they’re looking at late summer, early fall to do this.

Planning and Development Highlight

Council briefly discussed a renewal application for Crown disposition at Forks Recreation Area for a boat launch and how Brian Pierce has been handling it. The Council discussed how this application is just a disposition on Crown Land to have it placed there. The one that was there previously, Council said, was taken out by a disaster, and this application relocates it downstream about 100 yards, but there had to be a new application made to renew the permit and the lease for the park itself because the applications expire every 10 years.  

Capital Transaction Report to End of April 2023

Council said that the majority of the capital infrastructure projects for Phase One, Phase Two, and Phase Three of the Horsefly Spillway Project, is a long-term debt payment along with the water ventures and a few equipment purchases.

Council only briefly touched upon the operating financial statement to the end of April 2023, stating that the bottom net deficit for the year is close to what is expected considering the previous year’s inflation.

Reconciliation Report

Council discussed that in the Reconciliation Report to the end of April, Council started the month with $404,689, and receipts of $889,665. $1 million of investments was transferred into the account, and disbursements of $1,808,698 leaves the M.D. with a balance of $485,646. In terms of deposits and investments, there were $42,594,477.

Most of the $42 million, Council said, is tied up with Horsefly Spillway, with $24.25 million of that being advance grant funding for the project. 

Deputy Reeve Miyanaga Report

Deputy Reeve Tamara Miyanaga stated that June 21 is National Indigenous People’s Day and that the Eagle Spirit Nest is looking for volunteers to help celebrate that. Those who can volunteer, Miyanaga said, should reach out to Lisa Sowinski at spiritnestcommunity@gmail.com. 

On June 21, Deputy Reeve Miyanaga said, the Eagle Spirit Nest Community Association is putting on a workshop for Indigenous people that would like to be involved in the solar industry and the M.D. of Taber Council has also been invited to participate. The event begins at noon on that day at the Taber Community Center.

Taber Handibus Meeting Highlights

Councilor Hildebrandt brought an issue to Council’s attention that was raised by Taber Police Service. Hildebrandt said police had related that residents of the region said they have very little access to affordable transportation and Council identified there is a problem that needs to be addressed. 

Councilor DeGroot Report

Councilor DeGroot reported to Council that he encourages the Taber Shooting Foundation to contact Communications Coordinator Carley Grant to get some promotion for themselves because they hold world-class events and deserve exposure.

Taber Region Local Long Table Dinner Information

Council discussed how the M.D. of Taber is providing a Gold Sponsorship for the inaugural Taber Region Local Long Table Dinner that is set to take place on July 28, 2023. The Gold Sponsorship, Council said, means that four tickets are made available to the M.D. Council said that this dinner will be highlighting foods and products grown in the area.

Regional Community Standards Appointment

Councilor DeGroot made a motion that Council appoint, pursuant to Section 555 of the Municipal Government Act of Alberta, new summer staff members Christina Wheeler and Ryland Baker to the Taber Police as designated bylaw enforcement officer and bylaw officer. Council approved the motion.

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