News | DrumhellerMail - Page #635
Last updateSat, 28 May 2016 1pm

Delia residents seek inquiry from Municipal Affairs Minister

    A group of residents of Delia is starting a petition to ask the Minister of Municipal Affairs to take a closer look at the affairs of the village.
    According to a poster sent out by concerned residents, they are collecting signature on a petition, urging the Minster of Municipal Affairs Ken Hughes for an inquiry into the affairs of the municipality.
    “Since the inception of the new Council in October our community has been stalemated from moving forward in ANY direction due to in-house erosion,” states the document the Mail received from Sue Waye.
    The reasons for the inquiry are stated on the poster including a number of alleged incidents including:
“• One day prior to the CAO resigning, effective immediately, three of four back-up drives from the village office were turned in to the internet service provider erased with no explanation. Password issues kept the village office in limbo for eight weeks.
• There is currently only ONE copy of bylaws, which is controlled by the CAO.
• Minutes from past meetings are not current for public viewing. Delegation’s issues are not recorded. In camera sessions were abused keeping the public uniformed. Motions made and passed in session have been removed from the minutes with no explanation.
• Confidentiality issues as discussions held in camera are made public within minutes of adjournment.”
    These allegations have not been proven.
    "We have some huge concerns and have had them for months," said Waye.
    She said these concerns date back to the previous council. Since the municipal election the village's CAO has resigned and the community is now facing a by-election after the current mayor resigned due to health reasons.
    Under Section 572 of The Municipal Government Act, an inquiry can be undertaken by the Minister if electors numbering at least 20 per cent of the municipality’s population sign. The petition will then go to the village's administration  to confirm it is in order. If deemed to be valid it will go from council to the minister's office.
    Organizers of the petition are holding a public forum on Thursday, February 20 at the Delia Seniors Drop-in at 7:30 p.m. They are urging residents to come to the forum to discuss issues and to sign the petition. On the same day a volunteer will be at the drop-in centre from 10 a.m. to noon with the petition.

Diamond shines bright at Drumheller Legion

    They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but the songs of Neil Diamond are friendly to most everyone.
 This Saturday evening the Drumheller Legion is hosting a night of Neil Diamond. Jason Scott is bringing  Diamonds are Forever a Celebration of Neil Diamond for all to enjoy.
    Scott is the creator and performance artist for the one-man show exploring Diamond’s music and stage persona. The show spans Diamond’s entire career.
    “Neil Diamond has recorded his music so many times, and changed it so much, that interpreting that music can in itself be an art,” said Scott. “When you look at Neil Diamond’s history and career of six decades, you realize the music and the possibilities of that music are unlimited.”
    Scott’s show has been lauded all over.  In 2005, he was the first Canadian to win the “Be a Legend Celebrity Tribute Contest in Las Vegas. From there, he has won several international awards for his performances.
    Diamonds are Forever a Celebration of Neil Diamond is more than just a concert. It features authentic costumes, background stories, studio recorded tracks, spot on vocal tracks and audience interaction. It is a hit for all audiences, whether you are a fan of Diamonds from the 1960s or the 1990s. 
    “This music bridges generations,” said Scott. “The show is structured but also spontaneous, loose and huge fun as the performance is very audience interactive, sometimes I find myself in the crowd and then other times I’ve found some of the audience on stage with me.”
    Diamonds are Forever is being held Saturday, February 15. Tickets are available at the Legion.

Pay raise okayed for mayor and council

    Drumheller Mayor and Town Council will receive a three per cent pay increase retroactive to January 1, 2013.
    Council approved the policy that incorporated the recommendations of the Remuneration Committee at Monday’s Town Council meeting.
    The committee was appointed after the municipal election in October, and reported back to Council with the recommended increase, as well as a three per cent increase effective January 1, 2014, and a three point five per cent increase effective January 1, 2015. For their remaining terms of service, the Mayor and Council receive annual increases as per the negotiated Union Agreements for Local 4604 and Local 135, with an average between the two amounts if they vary.
    The Committee findings state that the remuneration puts the Mayor and Council in line with other municipalities of a similar size.
    The Committee also looked at compensation for Mayor and Council’s time and expenses they incur attending meetings, conferences and town-related business both at home and away.
    The $250 per day per diem rate is now clarified as four continuous hours of meetings.
    “We certainly appreciate the recommendations by the committee, who are trying to be as fair as possible, while still being accountable to taxpayers, as we are,” stated Councillor Jay Garbutt.
    Former Councillor from 2010 to 2013 Doug Stanford disagrees with the review, and thinks it should be handled differently, with the previous council reviewing and approving any remuneration changes for the mayor or council before the election.
    ”When you go into elected office, you know what you’re getting ahead of time, that’s what you get.”
    Stanford’s opinion is they make enough right now - not a bunch, but enough.
    “When you go into that office, you shouldn’t be there for the money.”    
    Andrew Berdahl also served on Town Council, from 2007 to 2013.
    “My initial response is the retroactive pay is probably necessary - three per cent is on par with both union and administration for the last few years.”
    As for the three and half percent raise for 2015, Berdahl has looked at  other contracts - provincial and otherwise - that he’s seen come in under the three point five.
    Mayor Terry Yemen’s thoughts on the pay - “I’m happy with it. They looked at comparable communities and they compared size and budget, and we’re dead center. I think compensation for mayor is fair and compensation for councillors is light.”

Was "Elbowgate" serious for you?

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