Carbon Levy implications

Written by Submitted

The town of Coronation participated in a survey conducted in 2016 by the Alberta Urban Muncipalities Association (AUMA) regarding the expected impact of the new carbon levy at their regular meeting Mon. March 6.
A summary of the results showed that fuel usage in 2015 was: gasoline $12,678, diesel $17,854; and propane $384 for a total of $30,916 with the estimated Operating Expenses Budget impacts of the carbon levy for 2017 up an additional $1,536.31, a 0.13 per cent tax increase and $2,304.73 in 2018, a tax levy per cent increase of 0.19 per cent on the Operating Budget.
Overall survey results showed the estimated average cost of the carbon levy in 2017 at $43,737 and in 2018 at $65,625.

Food Bank grant
Diane Schmidt, the community liaison for Coronation & District Support Services (CDSS), in her report to council noted that the Coronation Food Bank has received a $5,000 grant from the Rural Assistance Program.
Schmidt noted that they are considering using these funds for their coupon program and for cooking programs such as the Little Chefs and Outreach.
Two other grants are pending.

Public Communication Policy
Council passed a motion unanimously to accept the Public Communciation Policy to provide to council and staff with direction for public communication to ensure that consistent, clear and accurate messages are shared between the Town of Coronation and the media and residents.
The policy identifies specific spokespersons for the town as being: only the mayor or councillor vested by council with the authority to speak on behalf of council; the chief administrative officer or designate; senior department managers; and the fire chief or emergency site commander.
This policy is a result of last summer’s incident at the swimming pool when a chlorine gas alarm went off.
The situation needed a established perimeter, had media coming in and inquiring what was going on, and members of the department speaking.
The policy establishes who the official spokesperson is, what should be said and what shouldn’t be said, stated Kulyk, so the press would know who they should speak to if they want more information.

Hiring policy
Recruitment, Selection and Hiring Policy was passed unanimously to provide council and staff  direction for the recruitment and hiring of employees for the town.
The policy sets out who does the hiring, when the hiring needs to go up a level due to conflict of interest as well as guidelines  for advertising, short-listing, interviewing, candidate selection and offers of employment.
The policy provides structure and direction and who does the hiring.
“If there is a problem, then there is accountability,” said CAO Kulyk.
For example, the policy states that senior managers under the direction of the CAO are responsible for hiring the part time and temporary staff, however, if there is a conflict of interest, then the hiring moves up a level to the CAO.
“I think that is totally fair,” said Coun. Liz Adams.
The council is only responsible for hiring the CAO.

Recreation facility rental

Inequities were discussed in the rental costs of the bowling alley, one-hour rentals of $50 versus renting the bowling alley for $180.
Council approved the amended rental policy to a two hour minimun rental of the bowling alley.
Regarding the Curling Rink rentals during the summer season when the town takes over, it was decided that rental of the entire facility should be $300, down from $350; the downstairs and ice area only $200; and the upstairs $150.
The Lions Rec Centre hall rentals has two rental options, one with cleaning included and one where the renter is to clean the facility at the conclusion of the event.

Broadband preparedness
Council reviewed the presentation from the Regional Broadband Preparedness meeting Feb. 15 in Coronation.
The intent is to provide a common understanding of broadband at both the regional and municipal level, identify where each community is at relating to broadband, provide an understading of the potential options available and to see which approach might best meet Coronation’s needs.
A strategy will be developed with which the municipalites or the region can move foreward as a whole.
Four options presented including maintaining status quo, incremential implemention by looking at fibre network requirements in planning/development processes, and develop a Broadband Service Strategic Plan; negotiate for broadband services from current provideers (Shaw, Telus, Axia, CCI, etc.) or develop a utility communiyt-owned fibre network either individually or regionally.
The report went on to say “Unfortunately because Coronation is too small to run a sustainable operation, the assumed cost structure would run an ongoing deficit.
To be sustainable, Coronation would have to reduce costs of putting in the fibre optics, obtain grant funding or utilize a tax levy and/or reduce operational costs by partnering with other communicities or outsourcing operations.
Telus is provided fibre to the curb in Drumheller, Stettler and Wainwright said CAO Kulyk, adding it is estmiated at $2,000 per household or $5,000 if they go underground.
The report noted the success of a fibre network in Olds, Ab. however, Kulyk noted, “we’re not in the [Hwy 2] corridor.”
Council accepted the study for information only.

Amalgamation of housing authorities
“Before people drive from the city for a meeting” on the amalgamation of these two boards (Castor & District Housing Authority and Coronation & District Housing Authority, council would like to see motions from the other two muncipalities.
So far it is not known if Halkirk and Castor have made resolutions to look at amalgamation.  Coronation and the County of Paintearth have made motions to consider the amalgamation of the two housing authorities.
Definitely feel that all parties need to commit to looking at an amalgamation.  It [a meeting] is like putting the cart before the horse.

About the author