On January 9, 2017, the Mayor and Council of Eckville held their first Council meeting of the 2017 calendar year.
Parkland Community Planning Services Contract
Council deliberated on whether to continue with this shared service partnership.
Currently, the partnership which helps in “developing beautiful resilient communities” that “involves using various tools and processes to create high-quality functioning built environments”, includes the Towns of Bentley, Botha, Eckville, Innisfail, Olds, Penhold Ponoka Rocky Mountain House and Sylvan Lake, as well as the villages of Alix, Big Valley, Clive and Delburne in addition to the Sylvan Lake Summer Villages.
Eckville has been a member since 1995 and currently contributes $10,000 per year to the service, however many of the communities mentioned are considering leaving the program due to stress on the economy.
Parkland Community Services is requesting Eckville re-up their contract past March of this year, however it’s unclear whether the program will continue to receive the provincial funding necessary to continue past 2017. Council was unsure of how to proceed with this motion considering Parkland Community Planning Services currently has $280,000 in their reserve and it’s unclear what would happen to these funds if the service is dissolved.
It was requested that Council inform Parkland of their decision by February 8, however Council – led by the advice of Mayor Posti – pushed this choice until February’s Council session.
Alberta Community Partnership Grant
Eckville, along with Bentley, Big Valley, Caroline and the Village of Clive have applied for an Alberta Community Partnership Grant to help fund a mutual Geoghraphic Information (GIS) Cloud system that will collect vital data for further development. The total cost of the project is $88,500, with the five communities requesting $63,500 of that cost to be paid by the grant.
Council was requested to make two motions to approve this grant request:Be it resolved that we authorize the Town of Eckville to participate in an application for the project of Geographical Information System (GIS) Cloud made by the Village of Clive under the Intermunicipal Collaboration component of the Alberta Community Partnershiop (ACP) Program, futher
That the Town of Eckville, a participant, agrees to abide by the terms of the Conditional Grant Agreement, governing the purpose and use of the grant funds.
Both motions were passed by Council to go forward with this grant request.
Lacombe County Funding
The County of Lacombe have informed the Town of Eckville they have additional available funding for Town services.
The amount of $2,000 was allocated to the Eckville Children’s Playgroup; $2,500 was allocated to the Eckville and Community Youth Society and $2,000 was given to the Eckville Recreation Board. Council expressed gratitude for the extra funding to some of its vital programming.
Vision for non-violence
Red Deer-Lacombe MP Blaine Calkins sent a letter to the Town of Eckville thanking them for their involvement with the Central Alberta Vision for Non-Violence Coalition.
“You are to be commended for recognizing the need for increased public awareness and education around family violence, senior abuse and bullying and for providing your constituents with the opportunity to become involved in finding solutions and preventative measures for these very serious issues,” Calkins wrote in the letter.
Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI)
On November 30, Mayor Helen Posti and the Town Council of Eckville received a letter from the Minister of Municipal Affairs Danielle Larivee informing them of the Town’s application for MSI funding for their 2016 operating allocation.
“As partners in supporting Alberta’s communities, I look forward to working together to move your local priorities forward,” Minister Larivee said in the letter.
The following projects were accepted by the MSI Capital ProgramFire rescue equipment purchases – $25,000
Storage building upgrades – $80,000
Lawn mower replacement – $40,350
Public works vehicle replacement – $22,323
Public works truck replacement – $27,811
2016 Road and sidewalk upgrades – $83,950
Security camera purchases – $36,632
Electoral Boundaries Commission
A commission was appointed on October 31, 2016 to begin work reviewing the boundaries and names of 87 electoral constituencies in the Province.
The commission is wanting to hear from Albertans regarding the current boundaries and is accepting admissions at www.abebc.ca.
An interim report is being submitted to the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly on May 31, 2017; and the final report will come on October 31, 2017.