The low Canadian dollar is costing municipalities more money as Kneehill County discovered at their Feb. 9 meeting.
Director of Corporate Services Mike Morton brought a request to council for an additional $23,000 to purchase a new grader. The original budget was for $440,000 but tenders came in at $462,557. Council approved the additional amount from general revenue.
Poor economy equals poor return
Due to the low return Kneehill County is getting from sales of used equipment, the county has decided to keep equipment for an additional two years.
According to Brad Buchert, Manager of Transportation and Facilities, the additional wear and tear on the equipment should be manageable and should not effect the sales price adversely.
Promoting the Hwy 27 “Rockies to Badlands Parkway” as a tourism corridor is the focus of a new inter-municipal working group. The group currently consists of Kneehill County, Sundre, Mountainview County, Olds College, Trochu and Three Hills.
Economic Development Officer Patrick Earl laid out the project for council, which has a proposed April launch date.
According to Earl, the group proposes to coordinate tourism events along the corridor to compliment rather than overlap each other. Encouraging increased traffic along the route could generate additional tourist dollars to the mostly rural region.
Part of the strategy includes lobbying Alberta Transportation for specialized signage promoting the route and Alberta Tourism for tourism specific retailer training.
Every year the county invites one representative from a municipality within Kneehill County to attend the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties. This year Mayor Vanessa Van der Meer of Linden will accompany council to the convention.