Hanna downtown project awaits essential meeting

Hanna town council heard that the downtown redevelopment project awaits an important meeting linked to the project’s start date.

Councillors heard an update for the project at their April 9 regular meeting of council.

Town Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Kim Neill gave a verbal update to councillors on the downtown redevelopment project; he stated engineers are currently working on bonding and insurance certificates and it’s hoped a project start-up meeting will be held soon.

Neill added he really didn’t have anything more to report and no timelines would be known until after the start-up meeting was held.

Budget overview
Councillors examined the budget overview report submitted by the CAO.

Coun. Kyle Olsen asked if “the skate park stuff” had been ordered, to which Neill answered yes, the skate park project is moving ahead. Olsen asked if the school group remains involved to which the CAO also answered yes.

Neil further added the Town of Hanna will speak to a paving company about placing a new layer on the existing pad.

Capital budget
While providing an update on the current capital budget the CAO noted the Town of Hanna ordered a new loader April 9, while adding information about the skate park work.

Ice Season is Over
Councillors perused Community Services Facilities Manager Kevin Olsen’s report, which noted several major ice facilities, such as the curling rink and arena, had their ice taken out. It was noted the arena was being prepared for the lacrosse group to start up.

It was also noted town staff are preparing for a drought summer, including irrigation systems and planting; all summer staffing is in place.

Staff were hoping that within a week the baseball diamonds would be ready for use; minor ball was already active indoors. Staff noted there’s been talk of a major upgrade for the Triplex diamonds.

It was noted the community centre kitchen project hasn’t gone according to plan as some necessary parts haven’t arrived yet. Groups using the kitchen have adapted to the issues though and the CAO noted the Town of Hanna is recognizing this.

Public Works report
Councillors read the regular report of Brent Olesen, director of public works, illustrating his department is fully preparing for spring and summer. Olesen stated Public Works has been filling potholes and working on road patches.

One of the first spring jobs usually performed by Public Works, street sweeping of the winter sand and dust build-up, will be somewhat delayed reported Olesen.

He noted the street sweeper was currently in Calgary getting inspected; he hoped the vehicle would be back soon and sweeping could be started within two weeks.

Fire Department update
Fire Chief Dave Mohl presented his regular report to councillors, noting the first quarter of the year was relatively quiet, which he said was unusual.

It was noted in Mohl’s report that in the quarter Hanna Fire Department responded to nine calls in town, with five of them being medical assist.

During discussion Coun. Angie Warwick noted the five false alarms the fire department responded to; she wondered what caused these and what could be done to prevent them.

As councillors discussed the issue, it was pointed out some of the false alarms are security systems; or smoke alarms going off because of somebody’s cooking.

The CAO noted some municipalities actually have fees for false alarms, but the Town of Hanna doesn’t have that in its bylaw.

Councillors accepted all senior management reports as information.

Stu Salkeld
Local Journalism Initiative reporter
ECA Review

About the author

Stu Salkeld

Stu Salkeld, who has upwards of 28 years of experience in the Alberta community newspaper industry, is now covering councils and other news in the Stettler region and has experience working in the area as well.

He has joined the ECA Review as a Local Journalism Initiative Journalist.

Stu earned his two-year diploma in print journalism from SAIT in Calgary from 1993 to ’95 and was raised in Oyen, Alta., one of the communities within the ECA Review’s coverage area.