Clearwater County Council Meeting Notes
by Helge Nome
All councillors were present at the regular meeting on October 11 to hear submissions from four delegations and a request for approval of the 2017 budget of the Parkland Regional Library System, of which Clearwater County is a member.
Library system manager Ron Sheppard made a case for a 2% increase in the budget which was grudgingly approved by a 4 to 3 vote by Council. Similar sentiments had reportedly been expressed by many of the other 63 municipalities that are members of the library system. They were generally in favor of no incease in the budget over 2016 figures.
ROAR Society President Kendra Reap made a presentation on the society’s current status to council. She noted that, thanks to a generous donation, the society now has its own premises in Rocky and the report presented indicated that most of the intake of animals consists of cats in a better than 10:1 ratio to dogs. However, as the County now pays between $300 and $400 for each dog apprehended by contracted animal services, the possibility of ROAR getting involved in providing this service was brought up in an interchange of ideas between Reeve Alexander and Reap.
FCSS Manager Andrea Vassallo made her presentation to Council, noting that she was pregnant with twins, and would be going on maternity leave over the winter.She gave a general report on the Clearwater Regional FCSS program, of which she is the manager, reporting to a board of representatives from Caroline, Rocky and Clearwater County. She gave an overview of the various organizations and programs in the area that are supported financially by a $400,000 - 500,000 annual budget that is 80% funded by the Province and 20% by the municipalities, in proportion to their populations.
Sundre RCMP Detachment Commander Sgt. Jim Lank and Rimbey Detachment Commander Sgt. Kurtis Pillipow gave reports on respective crime statistics for their portions of Clearwater County. The main trend is a major increase in property crime. Sgt. Lank gave a somewhat amusing report on a bust in the Prairie Creek area where a search warrant was executed based on GPS data from a notepad stolen from the Sundre area. A considerable amount of stolen stash was discovered on the farm from which the notepad reported its location. So, maybe the key to solving property crime lies in embedding GPS systems in our valuable possessions?
Clearwater County Highway Patrol Manager Terri Miller presented a report
on her department’s activities as per the agenda package. She also introduced a new member of her team, Chad, who used to be a Peace Officer in Rocky Mountain House. When asked by Councillor Laing about the delay in bringing the new team member into active service (he was apparently hired in May), Miller responded by saying that he needed to be trained on highway laws and regulations, before being able to work on his own.
A municipal procedures bylaw was scheduled to be revised after lunch after I had left the meeting, and I assume that the bylaw was adopted as indicated in the text below:
Agenda Delivery 10.2 The Chief Administrative Officer will distribute the Council Agenda to the regular designated address of members of Council on the Friday afternoon prior to the Council meeting. However, if a Friday or Monday prior to the Council meeting falls on a holiday, the Council Agenda will be distributed on the Thursday preceding the Council meeting.
Post meeting note:
After an in-camera session, council reversed its decicion to increase the Parkland Regional Library budget.