Loading...
2019-09-19 Council (Regular) MinutesCOUNTY OF NEWELL MINUTES OF REGULAR COUNCIL September 19, 2019 The regular Council Meeting of the County of Newell was held in the County Office on Thursday, September 19, 2019 commencing at 10:11 a.m. MEMBERS M. Douglass, Reeve PRESENT: COUNCILLORS: C. Amulung H. Kallen A.M. Philipsen W. Hammergren K. Christman E. Unruh B. de Jong L. Juss ABSENT: T. Fyfe STAFF: K. Stephenson, Chief Administrative Officer L. Johnson, Director of Corporate Services G. Tiffin, Manager of Planning, Development & Engineering M. Jackson, Supervisor of Planning & Development S. Simpson, Development Clerk M. Fenske, Manager of Finance J. Nesbitt, Municipal Enforcement Supervisor S. Luchies, Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator T. Green, Director of Agricultural Services A. Nielsen, Executive Assistant OTHERS IN S. Stanway, Brooks Bulletin ATTENDANCE: T. King, Brooks Bandits D. Stabbler, County Ratepayer B. Stabbler, County Ratepayer J. Buteau, County Ratepayer K. Swanson, Fire Chief (City of Brooks) C. Montgomery, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers 1. CALL TO ORDER Reeve M. Douglass called the meeting to order at 10:11 a.m. 2. EXCUSED FROM MEETING C-303/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR ANNE MARIE PHILIPSEN th ouncillor T. .yfe be used from the meeting. M I CA IED Regular Council September 19, 2019 3. ADOPTION OF MINUTES 3.1 Minutes - Council (September 5, 2019) C-304/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR KELLY CHRISTMAN that the September 5, 2019 Council Meeting minutes be adopted as presented. MOTION CARRIED 4. CALL FOR POST AGENDA ITEMS Reeve M. Douglass called for post agenda items. 5. ADOPTION OF AGENDA C-305119 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR WAYNE HAMMERGREN that the agenda be adopted as presented. MOTION CARRIED 7. BYLAWS 7.2 Bylaw 1959-19 Regional Assessment Review Board & Agreement The Director of Corporate Services provided background information on this item and responded to questions from Council regarding the duties of the Chair for the Regional Assessment Review Board. C-306/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR WAYNE HAMMERGREN that the Regional Assessment Review Board Agreement be approved as presented. MOTION CARRIED C-307/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR LIONEL JUSS that Anne Marie Philipsen be appointed Chair of the Regional Assessment Review Board for a three (3) year term from September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2022. MOTION CARRIED C-308/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR BRIAN DE JONG that Bylaw 1959-19, being a bylaw for the purpose of establishing a Regional Assessment Review Board, be given FIRST reading. MOTION CARRIED C-309/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR CLARENCE AMULUNG that Bylaw 1959-19 be given SECOND reading. MOTION CARRIED C-310/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR WAYNE HAMMERGREN that consent be given for Bylaw 1959-19 to receive third reading this 19th day of September, 2019. MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY C-311/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR HUBY KALLEN that Bylaw 1959-19 be given THIRD and FINAL reading. MOTION CARRIED Page 2 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 10. ADMINISTRATIVE BUSINESS 10.5 Councillor Payment Sheets (August 2019) C-312/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR KELLY CHRISTMAN that the August 2019 Councillor Payment Sheets be accepted with the amendments recommended by the Councillor Compensation Review Committee. MOTION CARRIED 10.6 Cheques for Payment There were no cheques for payment to discuss at this meeting. 10.7 Payment Register The Director of Corporate Services responded to questions from Council. ARRIVED AT MEETING D. Stabbler and B. Stabbler arrived at 10:20 a.m. C-313/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR ANNE MARIE PHILIPSEN that the Payment Register be accepted. MOTION CARRIED 6. QUESTION PERIOD/NOTICE OF MOTION A question period and notice of motion was held. Two County ratepayers were in attendance. D. Stabbler expressed concerns with the communication flow between the County of Newell and its ratepayers. D. Stabbler presented a proposed resolution to Council at the September 5, 2019 Council meeting. The resolution was tabled for more information. Since the discussions on regionalization have ceased, D. Stabbler expressed concerns regarding the City submitting a resolution through the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) regarding forcing rural municipalities to amalgamate with their urban neighbours. He asked if the County sent a letter to the City rescinding the letter dated July 9, 2018 that indicates that the County is in support of amalgamation. Reeve M. Douglass provided further information, indicating that Council has been in favor of participating in discussions involving amalgamation. During the last meeting of the Regionalization Working Group, the committee agreed that the meetings would not proceed without the County. D. Stabbler responded to questions, requesting a letter be sent indicating the County's withdrawal from the Regionalization Working Group. ARRIVED AT MEETING G. Tiffin arrived at 10:26 a.m. D. Stabbler indicated that the sewer charge on his utility bill has increased a as d if the rate was the same for Rolling Hills as it is for Scandia and Rain* r. Th I c of Corporate Services provided background information on the uniform r es. Page 3 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 ARRIVED AT MEETING M. Jackson arrived at 10:27 a.m. D. Stabbler indicated that the systems are not the same and this should be reflected on the utility bill. Discussion followed and it was noted that, while the cost to the County may be the same, the ratepayers in Scandia are subject to a Local Improvement tax for their sewer system. 10. ADMINISTRATIVE BUSINESS — continued 10.1 Draft Intermunicipal Development Plan (Cypress County) The Manager of Planning, Development & Engineering provided background information on this item and displayed the map showing the IDP area. There were five landowners in attendance at the open house that was held on September 11, 2019 and no concerns were raised. The Manager of Planning, Development & Engineering responded to questions regarding renewable energy development. The Chief Administrative Officer noted that quorum requires all four voting members and the Manager of Planning, Development & Engineering indicated that he would investigate that. ARRIVED AT MEETING S. Simpson arrived at 10:38 a.m. The Manager of Planning, Development & Engineering explained the process that would be followed for circulations, indicating that meetings will be held as required. He indicated that he would consult with other municipalities on possible mechanisms for electronic voting. ARRIVED AT MEETING M. Fenske arrived at 10:39 a.m. C-314/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR BRIAN DE JONG that Council supports the Draft Intermunicipal Development Plan document between Cypress County and the County of Newell as presented and provides direction to proceed to the first reading of the bylaw at the October 10, 2019 Council meeting. MOTION CARRIED LEFT THE MEETING G. Tiffin, M. Jackson, S. Simpson, D. Stabbler, and B. Stabbler left the meeting at 10:41 a.m. 10.2 Police Costing Model Engagement The Manager of Finance provided background information on this item, indicating that the proposed model uses a combination of equalized assessment and population to calculate the County's funding contribution to frontline policing costs. He expressed concerns with this formula, noting that there is a stark difference in police service levels between urban and rural municipalities and that Page 4 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 equalized assessment should not be used. Discussion followed. The Chief Administrative Officer responded to questions from Council, indicating that he would forward the survey link to Council. ARRIVED AT MEETING T. King arrived at 10:54 a.m. The Rural Municipalities of Alberta has scheduled a conference call to discuss the Proposed Police Costing Model for September 23, 2019 at 8:00 a.m. and Council was invited to participate. Further discussion occurred. C-316119 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR ELLEN UNRUH that Council draft a letter to the Government of Alberta indicating the County's position on proposed changes to the police costing model and that Councillors complete the online survey to indicate their level of support for the proposed changes. MOTION CARRIED LEFT THE MEETING M. Fenske left the meeting at 10:58 a.m. 8. DELEGATIONS 8.1 2021 World Junior A Challenge Bid (T. King - Brooks Bandits) T. King thanked Council for their past support of the National Junior A Championship tournament. He provided background information on the World Junior A Challenge, an international event run by Hockey Canada. If their bid is successful, Brooks will host the event on December 12-18, 2021. He outlined the potential economic and social impacts of the tournament and a preliminary budget. T. King indicated that they are requesting funding from the County in the amount of $25, 000.00 guaranteed funding and an additional $50, 000.00 funding if the event runs a deficit. He indicated that the City has approved the same request. T. King provided further information on other funding sources and outlined the bid strategy, which must be submitted by October 1, 2019. Council was given the opportunity to ask questions. T. King responded to questions regarding projected ticket sales, indicating that affordable tournament packages would be available. He responded to further questions regarding the success of other communities that have hosted this event as well as the success of the 2019 National Junior A Championship held in Brooks. LEFT THE MEETING T. King left the meeting at 11:21 a.m. ARRIVED AT MEETING J. Buteau and S. Luchies arrived at 11:22 a.m. J. Nesbitt and K. Swanson arrived at 11:23 a.m. Page 5 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 Further discussion occurred and it was suggested that this request be forwarded to the Joint Services Committee for consideration in the Economic Development budget or to Newell Regional Tourism Association. The Chief Administrative Officer responded to questions, indicating that the $25, 000.00 probably would be required in 2020. Further discussion on this item was postponed until later during this meeting. 8.2 Burning Pits - J. Buteau J. Buteau provided background information and requested that Council consider amending the Fire Bylaw as follows: • to allow burning in a burn pit without a fire permit, • to allow burning in a burn pit during a fire restriction; and • to apply fire restrictions by division or fire area rather than County -wide. J. Buteau responded to questions from Council. Concerns raised by Council included the possibility for high winds to carry embers and smoke a significant distance. Burn pits are not inspected by the County Fire Departments and fire restrictions are placed as a precautionary measure. K. Swanson provided further information, indicating that the bylaw contains clear information for burning household garbage. If one chooses to dig a pit or have a fire on bare ground, it is an outdoor fire. There would have to be clear guidelines and dimensions included for burning pits. He explained the process for placing fire restrictions, indicating that all County Fire Chiefs are consulted. Fire restrictions are for everyone's safety and similar processes are followed by all other Fire Departments in Alberta. K. Swanson indicated that, in the past, fire restrictions were applied to certain divisions, but that created confusion for the public. He noted that municipality -wide bans are normal for Alberta. Council was given the opportunity to ask questions. The Director of Corporate Services responded to questions regarding incinerator devices and indicated that, under the new bylaw, these permits would be given an expiry date instead of being issued in perpetuity. The Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator explained the difference between fire pits, which are considered outdoor fires and require a permit, and incinerator devices, which contain the fire in a small space. He indicated that the proposed bylaw changes contain additional guidelines for recreational wood fire pits, which are currently not permitted during a fire ban. The Director of Corporate Services and the Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator responded to further questions from Council. 7. BYLAWS — continued 7.1 Bylaw 1958-19 — Fire The Director of Corporate Services provided background information on this item. The bylaw amendments clarify the fact that, during a fire ban, the only open flame that could be approved is one with a liquid fuel source. Another goal is to ensure burns are supervised at all times and that precautions are being taken. Council was given the opportunity to ask questions. The Rural Fire & Page 6 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 Emergency Services Coordinator responded to questions regarding what constitutes a responsible person. Discussion followed regarding educating ratepayers of the requirements of the Fire Bylaw and ensuring that fire restrictions are advertised over all available media, including radio. The Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator provided an overview of the amendments to the bylaw pertaining to the levels of fire control. K. Swanson and the Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator responded to further questions. The Director of Corporate Services indicated that the proposed bylaw would be reviewed by the divisional Fire Chiefs during their meeting in October. C-316/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR LIONEL JUSS that Bylaw 1958-19, being a bylaw for the prevention or extinguishing of fires, for the safety, health and welfare of people and the protection of people and property from injury or destruction by fire, be given FIRST reading. MOTION CARRIED LEFT THE MEETING J. Nesbitt, K. Swanson, S. Luchies, and J. Buteau left the meeting at 12:18 p.m. LUNCH Council RECESSED for lunch at 12:18 p.m. and RECONVENED at 1:11 p.m. ARRIVED AT MEETING C. Montgomery arrived at 1:11 p.m. 8. DELEGATIONS — continued 8.3 Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) - Chris Montgomery C. Montgomery provided background information on the Canadian Oil & Gas Industry, indicating that cuts to production have been extended to December 31, 2020 and will likely remain until additional pipelines are built. He provided updates on several proposed pipelines and outlined several factors affecting gas prices for producers. Three issues that CAPP is working on with the provincial government include reducing the cost and amount of time required to obtain regulatory outcomes, increased transparency on how Assessment Year Modifiers are calculated, and the development of a package for liability closure and orphaned wells. CAPP is encouraging oil and gas companies to work together to address environmental liabilities and possibly save on closure costs. They are also proposing a new financial test for viability of companies. Council was given the opportunity to ask questions. C. Montgomery indicated that, while helping struggling oil and gas companies to stay in business does no h 'Ip the overproduction problem, these companies do bring jobs to the co munit goal is to remove as many inactive sites as possible while minimiz' g o om c impact. C. Montgomery responded to questions about self -regulation, indicati g that CAPP does not participate in pricing conversations with members. Council Page 7 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 indicated that the municipalities must find ways to continue providing roads and infrastructure with less income from reduced assessment. ARRIVED AT MEETING T. Green arrived at 1:32 p.m. C. Montgomery responded to further questions regarding natural gas storage, Bill C-69, and the pipeline project in British Columbia. He provided information on a data platform that is in development that would provide municipalities with a report showing the oil and gas industry statistics in their area. Council expressed concerns with the 35% reduction in shallow gas tax assessment proposed by the provincial government. C. Montgomery responded to future questions, indicating that he would return to Council in the future to present the data platform when it is complete. ARRIVED AT MEETING M. Fenske arrived at 1:45 p.m. LEFT THE MEETING C. Montgomery left the meeting at 1:46 p.m. 9. AGRICULTURAL SERVICES BUSINESS 9.1 Agricultural Fieldman's Report (September 2019) The Director of Agricultural Services presented the Agricultural Fieldman's Report to Council. Council was given the opportunity to ask questions. LEFT THE MEETING T. Green left the meeting at 1:59 p.m. C-317/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR KELLY CHRISTMAN that the Agricultural Fieldman's Report for September 2019 be accepted as presented. MOTION CARRIED 13. POST AGENDA ITEMS 13.1 Shallow Gas Tax Relief Initiative The Manager of Finance provided background information on this item, stating that the Minister of Municipal Affairs indicated that they are reviewing the regulated assessment model. He responded to questions from Council regarding the process for refunding the affected companies and the education tax refund installments to be received for 2019. Discussion followed regarding the consequences of not approving the Shallow Gas Tax Relief Initiative. Reeve M. Douglass reported on a meeting she attended on August 21, 2019 where representatives from Municipal Affairs suggested that was not an option. The ��o Chief Administrative Officer provided further information, indicating that it is not Page 8 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 clear if there would be future ramifications to municipalities who do not approve this request sent out from the Government of Alberta. The Manager of Finance responded to further questions from Council. Discussion followed. C-318/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR KELLY CHRISTMAN that Council APPROVES the cancellation of 35 percent of the property taxes and any related late payment penalties for the shallow gas well and related pipeline properties mandated by Municipal Affairs as per the letter from Minister K. Madu dated September 17, 2019. MOTION CARRIED LEFT THE MEETING M. Fenske left the meeting at 2:19 p.m. 10. ADMINISTRATIVE BUSINESS — continued 10.3 Foothills Little Bow Municipal Association Agenda (September 20, 2019) Council was provided with background information on this item. Discussion followed regarding the resolutions package. Councillor B. de Jong provided information on a proposed change to the Resolutions Policy which would reduce the deadline for submitting resolutions from four weeks to two weeks. Discussion followed regarding Resolution FA05-19 (Provincial Funding for Regional Air Ambulance Service). Reeve M. Douglass reported that a letter has been sent to the provincial government requesting support for HALO and for a review of the provincial Helicopter Emergency Services (HEMS) model. Further discussion followed. 10.4 Rural Municipalities of Alberta Fall 2019 Convention The Executive Assistant provided background information on this item and responded to questions from Council. Council requested that meetings be arranged with the Minister of Municipal Affairs to discuss the Shallow Gas Tax Relief Initiative, a lack of consultation, the reasoning behind the changes, and the use of assessment in the proposed police funding model. Discussion followed. Meetings were also requested with the Minister of Environment and the Minister of Community & Social Services. Discussion followed regarding Council's attendance at the RMA Fall 2019 Convention. 10.8 Requests for Functions of Council 10.8.1 RMA Fall 2019 Convention - Elected Officials Education Program Course C-319/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR CLARENCE AMULUNG that Councillor E. Unruh be permitted to attend the EOEP Course "Council's Role in Service Delivery" i EdMonto , AB on November 12, 2019 as a function of Council. MOTIO CAR Page 9 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 10.8.2 Rural Crime Tour (September 30, 2019) Discussion followed. C-320/19 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR B. DE JONG that Reeve M. Douglass be permitted to attend the Rural Crime Tour in Medicine Hat on September 30, 2019 as a function of Council. MOTION CARRIED 11. MUNICIPAL SERVICES BUSINESS There was no Municipal Services business to discuss at this meeting. 12. COMMITTEE REPORTS 12.1 Canadian Badlands Councillor A.M. Philipsen submitted a written report. 12.2 Economic Development County/Brooks Councillor A.M. Philipsen submitted a written report. 12.3 Bow River Basin Council Councillor B. de Jong submitted a written report. 12.4 Newell 9-1-1 Dispatch Association Councillor B. de Jong submitted a written report. 12.5 Newell Regional Tourism Association Councillor E. Unruh reported that local hotels have been invited to join the Destination Marketing Fund which will be used to promote local tourism. She provided information on a survey on destination marketing that will identify gaps, issues, and opportunities for the region. A report from the travel consultant is expected at the end of the month. 12.6 Newell Foundation Councillor A.M. Philipsen submitted a written report. .7 Assessment Review Board Councillor A.M. Philipsen reported that there are eight assessment appeals from the County of Newell scheduled for November 26, 2019. Page 10 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 LEFT THE MEETING Councillor E. Unruh left the meeting at 2:49 p.m. 12.8 Shortgrass Library Board Councillor K. Christman reported on the office renovations. She indicated that opportunity to use the meeting room. 12.9 County of Newell Library Board CAO evaluation, cyber insurance, and Shortgrass Library members have the Budgets are being gathered from the member libraries. J. Amulung is stepping down as chairperson but will remain on the board for a time. 12.10 Fire Area Committee -Division 6 The annual meeting was held last night. The Bassano Fire Department attended 55 calls this year, which is down from last year. Councillor K. Christman reported that there are currently 15 members (9 dedicated members) and that the Rural Fire & Emergency Services Coordinator will be looking into a Class 3 training course. The purchase of a bush buggy and water tender is anticipated for 2020. 12.11 Newell Recycling Councillor L. Juss provided a brief update. 12.12 Newell Regional Solid Waste Management Authority The Memorandum of Association has expired and, subsequently, the veto is no longer valid. This item will be discussed at the NRSWMA meeting tonight. The landfill continues to operate well. Councillor L. Juss responded to questions regarding the landfill and a succession plan for NRSWMA. 12.13 Grasslands Regional FCSS Councillor C. Amulung reported that funding. Local agencies will be seekin Regional FCSS on October 9, 2019. questions from Council. 12.14 Reeve's Report g there are concerns regarding future funding applications from Grasslands Councillor C. Amulung responded to Reeve M. Douglass provided a report on the most recent Citizenship Ceremony, an event at JBS for visitors from Brazil, and the County of Newell Road Tour. Page 11 of 12 Regular Council September 19, 2019 8. DELEGATIONS — continued 8.1 2021 World Junior A Challenge Bid — continued Discussion continued regarding this item and it was suggested that, if the event is profitable, the $25, 000.00 would be returned to the County to be held in a reserve for future events. The Chief Administrative Officer responded to questions from Council. Further, he suggested including funding for these types of situations in future budgets. C-321119 MOVED BY COUNCILLOR LIONEL JUSS that the County of Newell support the Brooks 2021 World Junior A Challenge Bid Committee, if they are successful in being awarded the 2021 World Junior A Challenge Tournament, with funding in the amount of $25,000.00 in 2020 on the condition that funding in the amount of up to $25,000.00 be returned to the County of Newell from the profits of the tournament. MOTION CARRIED 14. INFORMATION ITEMS 14.1 Mini Bus Monthly Report (August 2019) This item was accepted as information. 14.2 Strategic Priorities Chart This item was accepted as information. 14.3 Upcoming Community Events Council was provided a form to submit information for upcoming events in their community. 15. IN CAMERA There were no in camera items to discuss at this meeting. 16. ADJOURN Being that the agenda matters have been concluded, the meeting adjourned at 3:35 p.m. Signed this )b day of 0Cb;)1-eY'— , 2019 C Reeve C un ministrator Page 12 of 12