Intermunicipal Development Plans postponed

Stettler County sign - south entrance. (Terri Huxley/ECA Review)
Written by Submitted

The provincial government has mandated that each municipality must have an Intermunicipal Development Plan (IDP) with each of their surrounding neighbours.

County of Stettler council were presented with two, holding a public hearing at their regular monthly meeting held on Wed. April 10.

No written or verbal submissions were received so the hearing closed.

Council asked administration how far along the municipalities of Donalda and Big Valley were in the process.

They found Big Valley has been transitioning as there is a new CAO so the document has yet to be seen by their councillors.

Council determined they would pass only second reading so Big Valley could get caught up before they continue on as they may bring changes in the future which requires further paperwork.

Audited 2018 Financial Statement

Peggy Weinzierl of Gitzel & Company presented the financial statements and independent auditors report to kick things off at the council meeting.

Council approved the 2018 audit and financial statement and appointed Gitzel and Company as their auditor for another year.

Weinzierl felt the county was in decent financial shape. A prime example of this was their debt limit which they are nowhere near close to reaching.

The Municipal Government Act (MGA) sets a limit of $27.9 million in which a municipality can borrow but the County of Stettler has only $1.2 million tied up with wiggle room of another $24 million.

“The province of Alberta probably wishes”, joked Weinzierl.

She mentioned that the county is mostly under budget for the majority of their essentials but the Public Works Department still takes the most financial support with $11.5 million, 53 per cent of the total budget.

Of that large amount, $704,000 is put towards gravel contracting, $1.65 million for gravel material and almost a million in fuel costs.

Oil supplier chosen

On March 7, the County of Stettler received proposal quotations for the “2019 Supply and Apply Calcium Chloride Brine (32 per cent)”.

Rick Green, Director of Engineering and Public Works, felt Kortech Calcium Services Ltd. of Edmonton made the most sense as “We have good luck with Kortech.”

The lowest bidder of Camrose provided a unit $0.210/litre while Kortech bid slightly higher at $0.215/litre.

Typically, the lowest bidder is chosen but in some instances it can be different as decisions are at the mercy of council.

Green further explained that Kortech had changed their source or storage material from tankers to open pond format and the company had issues with their distributor last year as they were not getting the right consistency.

It has been known to be a provincial problem.

Since they changed their operations, Green wanted to give them a helping hand and mentioned how he had done his homework before thinking Kortech was the best option.

Council agreed to stick with Kortech at $0.215/per litre with minimum load size or 21,000 litres, minimum application rate of 10,000 litres/hour per spray truck, and additional spray time $150./ hour.

As for calcium, Green has been looking at the material as an alternative to using oil for dust control.

Before it was more expensive to the county as they depended upon outside companies to apply it but this winter they built their own application system to avoid this.

This year will act as a trial run for the material in case people want to make the switch. Green mentioned it is environmentally friendly as it is not corrosive or harmful to the environment as well as clearances to reassure those who may be concerned.

One of the top concerns is making sure the calcium work well with the oil but if all works well, they will be able to replace the oil with calcium as their consistent product.


Terri Huxley

ECA Review

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