Drumheller Town Council Meetings | DrumhellerMail - Page #15
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Council Notes from Regular Council Meeting Monday, December 5, 2022

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Council Overview
Information from Drumheller Town Council Regular Council Meeting
Monday, December 5, 2022

Mayor Heather Colberg opened the meeting and thanked the some 415 people who attended the Rails to Trails fundraiser dinner and silent auction at the Badlands Community Facility (BCF) on Friday, December 2 (see story Page 3).
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Director of Protective Services Greg Peters introduced Drumheller RCMP Staff Sergeant Rob Harms to council and welcomed him to the community.
S/Sgt Harms presented council with the quarterly update from July to September 2022.
He explained substance abuse was outlined as a community priorities, and S/Sgt Harms noted drug abuse and illicit drugs are often closely related to many other crimes, such as person based crimes like assaults, and property crimes. He noted the General Investigative Section (GIS) unit has allowed the detachment to execute multiple warrants over the last few months resulting in known offenders being arrested and several illicit substances being taken off the streets.
Drumheller RCMP has begun conducting checkstops and has already had success in suspending some impaired drivers (see story Page 10).
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Drumheller Resiliency and Flood Mitigation Office (DRFMO) project engineer Spencer Roberton presented council with a request to award the tender for the supply, delivery, and installation of tree and shrub plantings at the four active berm projects at Midland, Newcastle, North Drumheller Grove Plaza, and Willow Estates. Healthy trees removed for berm construction will be replaced at a ratio of five trees or shrubs for each tree removed and will be planted in the same relative area.
A total of three bids were received, and council awarded the contract to Wilco Contractors Southwest Inc. for the amount of $1,287,163 excluding GST; Wilco are the current construction contractor for three of the four berm sites.
Procurement is anticipated early 2023, with installation between spring and summer 2023.
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Director of Corporate and Community Services Mauricio Reyes presented council with a request for decision for the 2023 to 2027 Utility Rate model (see story Page 2).
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Mr. Reyes presented council with the 2023 Utility Operating Budget and three-year Utility Operating Financial Plan.
Water revenues are projected to rise by an approximate 7.4 per cent, which is partially related to the increase of water fees, along with anticipated higher volumes in 2023. Based on the approved three per cent water utility rate increase, water utility rates are anticipated to increase from $2.17 per cubic metre to $2.26 per cubic metre in 2023.
Drumheller’s utility rate is slightly below the average of $63.17 for an average household based on other comparable municipalities.
Wastewater revenues are expected to increase by approximately 18 per cent due to volume adjustments and the approved six per cent fee increase in 2023. This would see an increase from $2.28 per cubic metre to $2.42 per cubic metre in 2023; wastewater is based on 80 per cent of water volume for all customers who receive wastewater services.
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Mr. Reyes presented council with a request for direction for the 2023 Operating Budget and proposed four-year financial plan.
He explained, if the budget is adopted as presented, there is a recommended increase of 6.2 per cent to the municipal tax revenue to meet municipal requirements in 2023, and a 2.5 per cent increase in user fees due to increased costs.
There is a substantial increase to the RCMP contract in 2023, and an increase in personnel costs due to increased staffing and new positions added in 2022 which are being budgeted for a full year rather than a partial year.
The final draft budget will be brought forward to the next council meeting for consideration.
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Director of Infrastructure Services Dave Brett brought forward a request to re-award the tender for a 4-wheel drive backhoe loader. Council previously awarded the tender to Brandt Tractor Ltd in the amount of $285,363 excluding GST at the October 24 council meeting; however, upon receiving the Letter of Award, the Town was informed the unit was no longer available for purchase.
Units from the second and third options were also not available upon further follow up, and it was determined the award should be given to Brandt Tractor Ltd. for their second option in the amount of $336,675 excluding GST, an increase of $56,375 over the original award; however, a total of $345,000 was allocated within the 2022 Capital budget for this purchase and the new award will still result in under budget savings of $8,325 and sale of the unit being replaced will help offset some of the difference.
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A public hearing was held to discuss proposed amendments to the Municipal Development Plan (MDP) and Land Use Bylaw (LUB). These documents have been in effect since 2021, but require some amendments due to changes to the scope of the flood mitigation project and to make the documents more clear.
There was one written submission which was read into record and four speakers registered to speak on the proposed changes. Feedback from the public hearing will be used to refine the draft bylaws prior to being brought back for second reading consideration in early 2023.

Complete minutes from council meetings can be found on www.drumheller.ca once they have been adopted.


Council Notes from the Regular Council Meeting Monday, November 21, 2022

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Council Overview
Information from Drumheller Town Council Regular Council Meeting
Monday, November 21, 2022

Drumheller Mayor Heather Colberg opened the meeting and made some opening remarks.
The Festival of Trees will take place Friday, November 25 between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. at the Badlands Community Facility (BCF). Residents are invited to register for the event and bring artificial Christmas trees to the BCF to decorate.
The Festival of Lights will also take place on Saturday, November 26 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. with a variety of events planned throughout the evening.
Councillor Tony Lacher reminded listeners of The Salvation Army Red Bag Food Drive on Thursday, November 24 at 6 p.m.
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Director of Corporate and Community Services Mauricio Reyes presented council with a request for decision on the 2023 Capital Budget and 10 year Capital Plan.
Council were presented with the draft budget at the November 7 council meeting and Mr. Reyes noted the proposed budget comprises 39 projects totalling $8,351,500. This includes $3.47 million in infrastructure replacements such as the North Drumheller lift station and forcemain connection, and the Street and Sidewalk Rehabilitation programs; $1.73 million in infrastructure upgrades and renovations including $350,000 for the additional dressing room at the Drumheller Memorial Arena; and $1.2 million in capital equipment replacements.
The budget will be supported through some $1.4 million in one-time and ongoing grant funding, $4.57 million in tax supported municipal reserves, and $2.36 million in utility supported municipal reserves. Mr Reyes explained the total reserves balance at the end of 2021 was approximately $30.3 million; however, this amount also includes funds which were previously approved for capital projects which have not yet been spent. He noted, for this reason, the actual balance of the municipal reserves was actually lower than the $30.3 million shown.
These municipal reserves are expected to decrease nearly $10 million by 2025 as the Town increases its investment in capital assets.
Council unanimously gave first reading of the 2023 Capital Budget.
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Council adjourned the meeting.

Complete minutes from council meetings can be found on
www.drumheller.ca once they have been adopted.

Council Notes from Committee of the Whole Meeting Monday, November 14, 2022

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Council Overview
Information from Drumheller Town Council Committee of the Whole Meeting
Monday, November 14, 2022

Drumheller Mayor Heather Colberg opened the meeting and made some opening remarks.
Mayor Colberg welcomed Councillor Lisa Hansen-Zacharuk back to council after a medical leave of absence.
She also reminded the public of two upcoming community engagements at the Badlands Community Facility (BCF) on Thursday, November 17 regarding Drumheller Resiliency and Flood Mitigation Office (DRFMO) projects, and Tuesday, November 22 for a multi-project open house.
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Rails to Trails task force chair Jason Blanke and secretary Lana Philips presented the committee with an update on the taskforce. The task force was established earlier this year by council and community members, focused on fundraising to ensure funds are available to build a useable path as quickly as possible.
To keep in line with the coal and rail history of the Drumheller Valley, the task force is looking to establish stations, with the Main Station positioned on the edge of downtown Drumheller along with a donor wall, and stops between stations.
Currently, the task force has two main fundraising pieces-the Rails to Trails Community Christmas Party and silent auction on Friday, December 2, and sponsorships and donations from community members and organizations; more information regarding sponsorship opportunities will be available beginning on Friday, November 18.
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Director of Corporate and Community Services Mauricio Reyes presented the quarterly financial report, ending September 30.
The Town has collected about 87 per cent of 2022 taxes, totalling $21,798,903; this is consistent with previous years, and it is anticipated the remainder will be collected by the end of 2022. Municipal expenses are approximately 72 per cent of the approved budget of $21,341,884 and there is an anticipated positive variance of approximately $150,000 due to staffing vacancies in the first half of the year.
The Town has applied for some $1.3 million in capital and operating grants and have been successful in about 30 per cent of these, totalling $375,351, with some still pending approval.
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Recreation, Arts and Culture manager Darren Goldthorpe and RC Strategies project manager Steven Siawuta presented a cost recovery update on the Parks and Recreation Master Plan, which was previously requested by council. RC Strategies were contracted by the Town to undertake development of the Master Plan.
Mr. Siawuta explained the cost recovery was compiled based on comparable communities with similar recreation facilities.
While expenditures are consistent with comparable municipalities, revenues are generally lower per capita at the three primary facilities reviewed-BCF, Drumheller Aquaplex, and Drumheller Memorial Arena. Some preliminary recommendations have come out of this report, including setting cost recovery targets based on benefits the municipality is trying to achieve and exploring further revenue generation factors through the Master Plan.
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Mr. Goldthorpe and Community Events coordinator Alicia Smith presented a review of the role and events held in 2022.
The Town held several events over 2022 including Oktoberfest, Summer @ the Plaza, and an inaugural Alberta Culture Day celebration in September; Festival of Trees and Festival of Lights are upcoming in November.
There are several events tentatively scheduled in 2023, including another tree carving event similar to the one held in September as part of the Alberta Culture Day celebrations.
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Community Development and Social Planning manager April Harrison presented an overview of the Community Social Needs Assessment, which will also be shared during the multi-project open house on November 22.
The assessment is conducted every five years and ensures Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) can target funding and resources appropriately. The first phase of the assessment will begin in November with community and agency surveys, three community workshops, and a workshop for older adults and youth held at the Sunshine Lodge and Greentree School respectively.

Complete minutes from council meetings can be found on
www.drumheller.ca once they have been adopted.


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