Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Vol 15, Issue 8, Leduc – Wetaskiwin Pipestone Flyer
Council discussed and reviewed various 2011 budget items. (“This is a review, not finalizing”) Dust control—complaints have been received from “three or four people.” Council debates the merit of spending the $40 thousand/yr. minimum for control that may not hold up due to rainy weather. They also discussed alternate ways to kennel stray dogs and the repairing the leaking Village shop roof.
Donnelly & Company. LLP has been appointed to complete the audit of the Financial Statements of the Village of Warburg for the Year Ended 2011. Donnelly & Co. has been the auditor for the Village for the past 25 + years.
For years, the Village was allowed to hire individuals “16 years of age but not receiving a pension” in the Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP). Students were given first choice, but when no student has applied, other individuals were hired. This year, the Alberta Government changed the ruling restricting STEP to post-secondary and high school students only. Council has voted to participate in the STEP program. However, a letter will be sent expressing their concern that in smaller communities, it is difficult to find students willing to participate in STEP. If no students apply, those important STEP jobs, previously utilized by the Warburg Ag Society, will no longer be available.
Ditch, ditch, ditch—ready for tender.
Council has accepted the recommendations of Select Engineering Consultants Ltd. for reconstructing the curb and gutter on the north side of 52nd Ave. between 47th Street and the mobile home park entrance. Council will inquire about adding swales or dips to the “monolithic” curb and gutter for better drainage.
Meeting with MLA McQueen
Recently, Drayton Valley-Devon MLA Diana McQueen invited Councils within her constituency to an evening supper. Each municipality shared local initiatives for the coming year. Warburg Council shared their infrastructure plans, and the go-kart race track development. Councillor Gould reports they also spoke of “attracting more people to our community, drilling another well, working on bringing physician services into Warburg, and safety.”
The RCMP Thorsby Detachment is requesting support from Village of Warburg Council for additional administrative staff. Several reasons have been identified: increased administrative workload caused by front-counter complaints such as Motor Vehicle Collision Reports, Police Information Checks and corresponding fingerprinting requirement, and information requests made by the public–insurance reports, ATIP requests, Pardon Application Checks, etc..
According to the RCMP report to Council, “crime trends and statistics have increased dramatically since the inception of the RCMP Detachment in 1974 (while the administrative support staff has not increased).” Because Provincial Statutes enforcement has increased, the required time it takes to enter info onto the PROS system (the electronic interface Police Reporting Occurrence System) for managing and sharing operational police records within the RCMP and Justice community has increased.
The RCMP-TD notes there have been increases in: court workload, document service (summonses, subpoenas, etc.), and time sensitive requests from outside agencies and partners including Peace Officers.
In 2008, Thorsby detachment increased by one member but the support staff did not increase. Compounding the issue, clerks are required to attend court twice a month, leaving the office without staff on those days.
Looking to the future, the Port of Alberta will significantly impact population and industry growth which will necessitate higher police presence which will generate more office related work.
While Council recognizes the need for RCMP to get out of the office and onto the streets, they have questions and observations: Have the MP and MLA been made aware of the inadequate staffing issue? Since they are funded by tax dollars, why doesn’t the RCMP have the staff they require? We aren’t paying for other staff, why are we to pay for new staff? We are paying for Special Constables to enforce bylaws. The in-car computer system may make it easier for the officers in the car, but it requires extra staffing in the office. Why are the Police Information Checks administered for free? Shouldn’t there be a charge to help offset that cost?
For now, Warburg Council has tabled the RCMP’s proposal—adding the “preferred” full-time position (37.5hrs/wk), adding a part-time position (25 hrs/wk), or rejecting the proposal—until they receive more information regarding the cost associated with each. They want neighboUring communities (39/20 Alliance) and the County perspectives first.
Leduc County and the Village of Thorsby have also received the proposal for additional RCMP support staff.
By-law 99/10 Amendments
Impounded dog or livestock. 24.a) At the expiration of three days in the Village Animal Shelter, any healthy animal may be redeemed by its Owner or agent upon v) payment of the appropriate penalties specified in Schedule B. (b) At the expiration of the three (3) day period, any animal not claimed shall become the property of the Village and may be humanely euthanized or adopted to a person other than the Owner.
- Muskrats have contributed to a “yellow water” leak in the lagoon. Alberta Environment was notified. A company has been contacted to look into a temporary method to plug the problem area—possibly by using a foam plug. Cutting through the ice and sending a diver down to repair it at this time would be too costly.
- Special Constable Services issued their year end summary report for Warburg for 2010. There were 258.5 hours worked, 194 calls for service, with 10 violations issued totaling $1316.00.
- Council received a copy of an outline/summary report to Leduc County Council regarding Bill 19, Land Assembly Project Area Act; Bill 36 Alberta Land Stewardship Act; and Bill 50, Electric Statute Amendment Act.
- Council approved an updated letter of support for a grant application to the Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP), which, if funds are awarded, will “go directly to the continued development of the Warburg Kart Racing Park, to include further services being brought into the site allowing for the development of public wash rooms, completion of a public grandstand, demolition of the old track, reclamation of the land, etc.