Last council meeting of term reviews safety funding, bylaw changes

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Council commits $136,000 for safety

St. Albert city councillors agreed on Sept. 11 to fund eight items from the city’s safety enhancement reserve for a total of just over $136,000.

Items range in price from $4,000 for AEDs for two clubhouses to $37,000 in emergency supplies for St. Albert Fire Services’ emergency response trailer.

Other items include funding for safety training and $12,000 for an incident reporting app, which allows employees to report using their smartphones.

The decision brings the amount of uncommitted funds left in the safety reserve to around $516,000.

Fines increase for protection bylaw

People who violate St. Albert’s Protection of Persons and Property bylaw can now be given higher fines.

The bylaw passed its first reading on July 12 and came back to council Sept. 11 for second and third readings.

Originally, the bylaw set out penalties of $10 or $25. Now, people found guilty under the bylaw can be charged $250 or, if summarily convicted, be handed a fine of up to $10,000 or one year in jail.

The original bylaw dates back to 1963 and had not been revised since 1986. In July 2016, city staff began to draft a new bylaw to update the wording and fines.

The bylaw regulates public disturbances, including swearing, loitering, fighting or screaming and shouting; and use of firearms within city limits.

City hits the brakes on fiscal impact analysis

A $100,000-project in the city’s long-range financial capital plan won’t proceed as planned.

Council pulled funding for a fiscal impact analysis that would have given city staff a better understanding of the total cost of ownership for civic assets on future land developments.

City manager Kevin Scoble told councillors the analysis depends on factors such as an area structure plan for undeveloped lands, which has not yet been done.

“In retrospect, some of the aspects of the plan were optimistic with the current resources available and other priorities,” he said.

Sept. 30 proclaimed Orange Shirt Day

The full city council donned orange shirts to show their support of reconciliation efforts and remember the impact left by residential schools.

Mayor Nolan Crouse proclaimed Sept. 30 as Orange Shirt Day shortly after councillors approved five recommendations related to truth and reconciliation.

Those include supporting all calls to action in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada report; directing city staff to set up a meeting with local Indigenous elders to discuss creating an Indigenous relations advisory committee; having city staff prepare a report from that meeting; having the next council take part in an Indigenous cultural awareness workshop; and having city staff consult with local elders on civic events.

 

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