IN THE NEWS
- Building Plans No new news on the construction plans for the new administration building at this time. The salt/sand building is constructed and it is CLEARLY visible when driving south on Hwy. 22 from the Hwy. 12 intersection towards Rocky. Look to the east to catch a glimpse.
- FOIP Request Numerous concerns have been expressed about the purchase process and prices for the land at Caroline and north of Rocky. In order to address some of the issues the CCTA submitted a FOIP (Freedom of Information and Privacy) Request to the County on September 21. As of yet we have had no reply.
- County Review Following a request by County Council for a municipal review, word has been received that a preliminary review will be held on October 18, 2016. At that time staff from Municipal Affairs will interview councillors and the CAO to gather information on county operations in order to determine if a full scale review should proceed.
- LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD In preparation for the 2017 budget deliberations, the County is in the process of drafting a survey to gather resident opinion on their needs/wants, along with development directions. The survey will be available on the county’s web-site as well as at the county office, likely by mid-October. The county’s web-site is clearwatercounty.ca. We encourage everyone to let your voice be heard…make sure your friends and neighbors are heard too.
- Annual Meeting The CCTA’s annual meeting will be held Thursday, November 10, 2016 at 7:00PM at the Leslieville Elks’ Hall. We have invited Jason Nixon, our MLA, to be the guest speaker and to address current provincial issues, most notably the carbon tax implications. We encourage and whole-heartedly welcome newcomers to our organization as we work to represent taxpayer wishes and concerns.
OPERATING EXPENSE RANKINGS (expense per person)
- MD of Bonnyeville--- $5165.29
- Yellowhead County--- $4951.73
- Leduc County--- $4609.38
- Lacombe County--- $4353.64
- Clearwater County--- $4087.97
- Brazeau County--- $3996.48
- Cty. Of Gr. Prairie--- $3949.56
- Red Deer County--- $3749.29
- Mtn. View County--- $2722.63
- Sturgeon County--- $2548.69
- Lethbridge County--- $2500.19
- Rocky View County--- $2425.71
- Cty. Of Lac St. Anne--- $2317.36
- Foothills County--- $2290.23
- Parkland County --- $2242.09
- Wetaskiwin County---$2175.04
- Ponoka County--- $1958.04
(Note: Figures used in these calculations come from the 2015 Audited Financial Statements for each jurisdiction and the Wikipedia population numbers.)
ROSES With Thanksgiving come thoughts of wonderful food and feasts. As such it is fitting that we send huge bouquets of roses to all those hands who work diligently to provide our food needs year round. We are reminded that every facet of our diet comes from the land in one form or other. We need to be especially thankful to these stewards of the land who care for this valuable resource and work tirelessly to gather from it so we can enjoy the fruits of their labor.
RANT With budget deliberations looming I look at the ever increasing county operating expenses as well as the wages/benefits, and question their justification. We have continually heard the “reasons”--- “Residents are requesting more services.”, and “The province is downloading more responsibilities.”; however, I definitely question how a yearly increase in population of less than 1% warrants a 14-16% increase in wages/benefits. What increase in services has there been??? One has only to recall that drive way snowplowing is no longer provided to note a decrease in services. As for provincial downloading, one can look at the education system and see where schools and their staff have had to accept greater responsibilities with far fewer resources. Can further insight be garnered from current industry finances and their re-vamped focus? Maybe it is time for the county to take a hint from “down the street” or “across the road” where cost cutting and fiscal responsibility are dedicated efforts. Or is it just too easy to grab an extra per cent or two in taxes from those that are continually forced to foot the bill??