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Last updateTue, 23 Oct 2018 11am

Council Notes from the Regular Council meeting of Monday, June 25, 2018l

 

 

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Council Notes
Drumheller Town Council
Regular Council Meeting
Monday, June 25, 2018

Council hosted a public hearing to discuss changes to the Land Use Bylaw 10-8 for cannabis legalization changes. The proposed amendments will add additional definitions in preparation for legal cannabis sales as well as restrictions on where cannabis retail stores can be located. Palliser Regional Municipal Services’ Devin Diano presented council on background information, the purpose of the amendment, and evaluation and analysis on the proposed amendments.
Council heard from two members of the public in opposition to the proposed changes: Jaydee Bixby and Patrick Parsons. Bixby voiced concern with the 150 metre buffer zone, saying that the buffer makes it difficult to place a retail cannabis store in the downtown core due to the location of the Drumheller Outreach school. Parsons says the additional 50 metres proposed to the land use bylaw, in comparison to alcohol store restrictions, perpetuates the stigma that cannabis is a harmful substance.
Director of Corporate Services Barb Miller said the legislation mirrors liquor restrictions which are already in place. Council said they are willing to take into consideration all feedback.
Councillor Fred Makowecki asked what the signage of a proposed business would like like and Bixby said he understands Drumheller’s family-centred tourism industry and said signage on a potential store would keep this in mind.
Palliser’s representatives returned and Councillor Jay Garbutt asked if there were requirements to have the range between schools/hospitals at more than 100 metres (which the government requires) and they said no. Councillor Lisa Hansen-Zacharuk asked what would happen if a school moved within the buffer zone to a restricted location, and Palliser said that would be at the Alberta Liquor and Gaming Commission’s discretion. Hansen-Zacharuk asked if medicinal marijuana dispensaries are liable to the same restrictions and Diano said it is an area of legalization which is unclear at this point.
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Council heard a request for decision to hire a seasonal downtown events coordinator. The request estimated around $10,000 would be budgeted for salary and program funding for the position, and funding from the federal government would subsidize about 50 per cent of wages. Councillor Zariski voiced concern about only hiring for a seasonal position when winter events, like the Festival of Lights, could be organized by this individual, as well as saying the position should not be limited to the downtown as the name of the position suggests. Councillor Garbutt said the town has committed to downtown revitalization already and the town should respect their commitment. Councillors Hansen-Zacharuk and Makowecki voiced their support of the request. CAO Drohomerski said the opportunity would allow council to see how effective the program is before expanding it outside of downtown. The request was passed unanimously by council.
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Council reviewed the Strategic Business Plan and heard an update from CAO Drohomerski. The plan and update was not readily made available to media. Changes included flood mitigation, with additional work planned for this winter. Work has been done to develop a framework around communication for the plan which will be brought to council later this summer. Drohomerski said they have met with ATCO to develop more solar energy in the community by evaluating costs and available grants and will be brought back to council for exploration for 2019. The poverty reduction strategy will return to council in fall with plans to be included in the 2019 budget. Administration has explored placing pay parking at tourists areas downtown, exploring either pay kiosks or admission gates with costs estimated at around $40-60,000. A report on an employee incentive program is being created and will be brought back to council. A toboggan park site has been identified at the former ski hill with the hope to have something in place there this fall. Alberta Transportation will be resurfacing the stretch of Highway 9/56 from Gordon Taylor Bridge to Fountain Tire, which will include a lighted crosswalk indicators by Grove St.
Councillor Garbutt made a motion to go in camera because he wanted to talk about issues that may have privacy concerns.
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Council passed second reading of the motion to amend the Land Use Bylaw 06-18 and then held a discussion regarding the comments heard from the members of the public who spoke at the earlier hearing. Council discussed how cannabis retail stores may operate downtown with the buffer zones required in the amendments. They passed second reading with direction to reduce the 150 metre buffer between a retail store and a school to 100 metres, which is the AGLC minimum, and to eliminate the clause saying retail stores could not operate within 300 metres of each other. Third and final reading will be presented to council at the next council meeting.
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Council passed a motion to adopt a summer schedule of reduced meetings for the next months.


Council Notes from the Committee of the Whole meeting of Monday, June 18, 2018

 

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Council Notes
Drumheller Town Council
Committee of the Whole Meeting
Monday, June 18, 2018

Council heard a delegation from Diana Rowe and Linde Turner of the Drumheller and Area Childhood Development Coalition. They reported they have been conducting assessments of student’s level of development in preschool years using an Early Development Instrument which measures physical health and wellbeing, social competence, emotional maturity, language and cognitive development, and communication and general knowledge. In 2016, 122 questionnaires were completed at schools in the region. Council heard there is an area of concern in the physical health and wellbeing category, with findings suggesting that 19 per cent of preschool children are ‘at risk’ in this category. The coalition has been sharing their data with schools.
The delegation requested continued support from the town in sponsoring ‘Free Play’ sessions, which the town has done since 2014. Rowe said research has shown these free play sessions boost cognitive and emotional capacities in students. Mayor Heather Colberg said they would add a motion to next council meeting’s agenda to extend the town’s sponsorship.
•••
Councillors Fred Makowecki, Jay Garbutt, and CAO Darryl Drohomerski delivered reports from their attendance at the 2018 Federation of Canadian Municipalities in Halifax. Councillor Makowecki reported on the creative ways Halifax has transformed their public spaces. Councillor Garbutt noted ways to improve affordable housing in the community, opportunities to apply for additional federal funding for infrastructure, and ways to counter environmental sustainability issues. CAO Drohomerski reported that east coast municipalities tend to be better funded by the federal government, the trade show at FCM was a strong networking opportunity, and in his opinion the best presentation was on retail marketing.
Councillor Garbutt raised concern about the expense of the conference exceeding the funds allotted to councillors to attend events and wished to discuss this with council in the future.
•••
Council held a discussion to review the draft Public Participation Policy which outlines the degree the town and council is required to engage with the public. These changes are being made in accordance to demands within the Municipal Government Act which requires changes be made to municipal engagement strategies by July 23, 2018. CAO Drohemerski said the town hopes to conduct an online survey of community input in regards to the community’s needs on the town’s public engagement. Since there were only three councillors in attendance at this meeting, councillor Jay Garbutt requested discussion be moved to the next council meeting.
•••
Council held a roundtable discussion on bylaw enforcement. Mayor Colberg said she hears concerns from the community suggesting bylaw enforcement is ‘reactive’ rather than ‘proactive.’ Colberg expressed a desire for bylaw enforcement to become more proactive in their observation and citations of violations in the community. She identified wording in the policy which says anonymous tips are of no priority, which herself and councillor Garbutt saw as inaccurate and poorly worded as anonymous tips are considered but at a lower priority than complaints submitted by known individuals. Councillor Garbutt noted the town’s bylaw enforcement policy says only 10 per cent of bylaw violations are the result of a complaint.
•••
Council held discussion on their summer meeting schedule and made a motion to go in-camera.

Council Notes from the Council meeting of Monday, June 11, 2018

 

 

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Council Notes
Drumheller Town Council
Regular Council Meeting
Monday, June 11, 2018

Council heard a request for decision to appoint Cindy Woods as the town’s Development Officer which was passed unanimously. Cindy Woods returned to her position on June 4 from a leave of absence, and the position requires official appointment by council.
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Julia Fielding appeared before council on behalf of the Subcommittee on Health to present information on the committee’s term of reference and organization. The Subcomittee on Health is a subcommittee of the Economic Task Force Committee. The committee’s objectives include attracting and retaining health professionals in the community and to facilitate community engagement in that process.
Councillor Jay Garbutt said the subcommittee is not empowered by bylaw and suggested perhaps council should look at establishing a bylaw to support a committee on health in the town. Mayor Heather Colberg responded by saying the group only needed support and information from council to facilitate the attraction of health professionals. She clarified the subcommittee would be more accurately named a ‘standing committee’ as it is not an official division of the town’s task force but a group of organized citizens. Councillors Fred Mackowecki and Lisa Hansen-Zacharuk both said they were excited to see citizens looking for areas to improve our community.
Council moved to accept for information the terms of references presented, renaming the committee to the Drumheller Standing Committee on Health and to provide a letter of support from the Town of Drumheller.
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Council heard a request for decision to accept a proposal for 2018 Road Improvement and Other Work to be awarded to Rubydale Ashphalt Works for $1,177,656, the lowest bidder of three proposals. Council moved to award the tender to Rubydale Ashphalt. The contract came in under the expected budget. Part of the project will reconstruct the road on Hunts Crescent.
Councillor Tom Zariski asked that since the project is under budget would there be an opportunity to extend the scope of work with the remaining budgeted funds and Director of Infrastructure Armia Mikhaiel said it is possible and has been common practice in the past.
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Council moved to accept for information from the Economic Task Force Subcommitee’s reports, which were not immediately made available to media. Councillor Garbutt made it known that council should be presented with the force’s recommendations and plans for implementation as soon as possible.


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