Eckville Town Council Update

Town Council had a busy meeting on Monday, February 13.

Axia Fibre Optic

A delegation from Axia Fibre Optic, an Albertan base provider of fibre optic high-speed internet, presented to Council the opportunity to install high-speed fibre optic throughout the Town of Eckville.

Fibre optics promises unlimited data, no hidden costs, high speed upload and download times and constant connectivity. Currently Vulcan, Nanton, Nobleford, Barnwell, Stirling, Pincher Creek, Raymond, Magrath, Hanna and Fort Macleod use Axia’s network.

For an example of potential savings, the group sited $120,000 in savings residents of Vulcan saved due to the reduction of phone and TV bills.

Axia requires interest in their technology by both government and 30 per cent of the community’s population.

Council will deliberate on this matter and return an answer to Axia in the future.

Mayor Posti and CAO Jack Ramsden have previously reinforced that any infrastructure added in a potential deal would need to be Town property at the end of a contract term.

Election necessities

The 2017 Town of Eckville General Election is quickly approaching on October 16, 2017.

The Town’s bylaw requires Council to appoint a Returning Officer and Deputy Returning Officer in order for the election to proceed. The budget impact of these appointees is neutral, however the election will include eventual cost.

Town Administration put forward two motions for consideration:That Darcy Webb be appointed as the Returning Officer for the 2017 Town of Eckville General Election to be held on October 16, 2017.

That Jack Ramsden be appointed as the Deputy Returning Officer for the 2017 Town of Eckville General Election to be held on October 16, 2017. In the event that the returning Officer is unable to fulfill his duties, the Deputy Returning Officer shall be designated to act on his behalf.

Both the motions were approved by Council.

Multi Use Facility

The Recreation Board is working diligently to bring a new Multi Use Facility to the Town of Eckville.

The proposed facility would be an outdoor facility that would serve as an outdoor skating rink in the winter and would be used for various summer sports like basketball, ball hockey and pickle ball in the summer months.

It is has been proposed that “the best location for the new facility would be on the west side of the Friendship Centre.” This spot is currently a parking lot for the Friendship Centre, meaning that a new lot on the East side of the building would need to paved. This proposition was well received by both the Friendship Centre and the Recreation Board, thus allowing the proposal be brought to Council.

There is no current impact on the budget.

Administration brought the following motion to Council:That Eckville Town Council formally approve the area to the west of the Friendship Centre as the future site for the Recreation Board’s proposed Multi Use Facility and further that the area to the east of the Friendship Centre be approved as the future site for the new Friendship Centre Parking Lot.

The motion was passed by Council.

Friendship Centre Storage Facility

The Eckville Friendship Centre has requested permission from Council to build a new storage facility at the south end of the building.

The new facility would work in congruence with the proposed new Multi use Facility proposed by the Recreation Board.

The Friendship Centre is hoping to receive a grant from the Federated Coop’s Community Spaces Grant in order to alleviate the cost of this facility. There is no impact on the Town budget at this time.

Administration brought the following motion to Council:That the Town of Eckville grant permission for the Eckville and District Friendship Club to construct a storage facility on the west side of the Friendship Centre Building

And that the Town of Eckville grant permission for the Eckville and District Friendship Club to make an application to the Federated Coop for a Community Spaces grant to construct a storage facility on the west side of the Friendship Centre Building which is owned by the Town of Eckille

Land Use Bylaw

A second and third final reading was given to a land use bylaw that provides clarification on confusion in a previous bylaw that outlined the minimum width of manufactured homes on new and infill homes.

The new more concise bylaw was given their due three readings and passed by Council.

Communities in Bloom

Council discussed the potential benefits of joining Communities in Bloom Alberta.

The purpose of Communities n Bloom is to create “a province and communities within that embrace and proactively use recreation and parks as essential means for enhancing individual well being an community vitality, economic sustainability and natural resource protecting and conservation.”

The program has seen as many as 62 communities participate in a year which have recognized the following benefits:Increased civic pride and community involvement

Participation from all ages and walks of life

Citizens, groups, organizations, business and municipal government all mobilized and working together

Year-round projects and continuous improvement for the entire community

Information and cultural exchange within the community and with neighbouring, provincial, national and international communities

Valuable information and feedback from trained judges

Decreased vandalism

Economic development and increased property values

Marketing and promotional opportunities

Positive benefits for the tourism, hospitality and retail industries

Improved quality of life

If the Town chooses to participate, they would need to first register and then form a committee.