Three competent contractors from Red Deer submitted bids for work on the Stettler Recreation Centre (SRC), with only $20,000 separating the lowest from the highest. At the regular Stettler Town Council Meeting on August 6, 2013, Council unanimously passed a motion to accept the lowest bid from Shunda Consulting & Management Ltd. in the amount of $1,810,675, with the option to reconsider the library ceiling design.
There were mixed opinions on whether spending extra on an aesthetically pleasing library ceiling would be worth the cost. The architect, John Hull, had been asked to have the ceiling amount separately bid and did not. He will again be asked to negotiate that amount and bring it before Council for a final decision.
The Town of Stettler is providing the following funding: SRC Capital Reserve ($1M); Seniors Reserve ($150,000); Library Reserve ($195,000); General Reserve ($570,927) for a total of $1.9M. External sources of funding are CIIF Grant ($250,000) and County of Stettler ($140,000) for a grand total of $2.3 million.
The argument for two-tier pricing at the SRC was raised again. In his remarks, Mayor Dick Richards said, “we want and are extremely happy that children from the County of Stettler and from outside the County use our facilities. But it’s not fair that taxpayers in Stettler pay a full 30 per cent of their property taxes to recreation where other jurisdictions pay a very small percentage. There has to be a common solution where everyone is treated fair.”
“We need to explore a 2-tier pricing system or something else to make it more equitable, said Thorogood speaking of the SRC as a joint recreation facility with a rural and town community..
The Mayor will speak to the Reeve about establishing a committee to jointly study this ongoing rub between the two jurisdictions with a hope of resolution. “We do so much good together—there’s a solution out there,” said Richards.
Four options for development of the Northeast Industrial Area Structure Plan were presented by Dave Dittrick, Zap Consulting. A motion to accept Option 2 was unanimously passed. This concept allows for two accesses to the ring road, one access to 52 Avenue (Stettler Auction Mart) and potentially another access to the south. It was chosen because with the least amount of roadways and utility lengths, more saleable land was available. It would be developed over four stages on an as-needed basis.
Municipal Development Plan
Last summer, Administration undertook community consultation and prepared the final amendments to the Municipal Development Plan (MDP). Amendments included identifying the future Highway 56 (north) alignment, removing 46 Street as a Trucking and Dangerous Goods Route, and re-instating the policy respecting development within the Floodway/Flood Fringe. First reading of MDP, By-Law 2041-13 received unanimous support. The next step is to advertise and hold a Public Hearing, followed by the second and third readings.
A motion was unanimously passed to assess a local improvement fee on properties on 42 Street from 49 Avenue to 50 Avenue, and on 50 Avenue from 42 Street to 38 Street to cover the cost of street paving. Lands abutting this local improvement will be charged an annual per foot rate of $15.76364 for each year of a 20-year period. Property owners have a right to oppose this assessment through petition. The petition requires signatures from 2/3’s of owners holding at least 50 per cent of assessed property values and must be received within 30 days of owners receiving the notice.
2013 Tax Auction
The Town has started the process to recover taxes from two properties (6018 – 52 Avenue and 5914 – 51 Avenue) that are in tax arrears. Council unanimously approved a motion to set the Public Auction date as October 15, 2013. The tax recovery process can be stopped by payment of all tax arrears prior to the sale.
Three bids were received for the purchase of a new Wheel Loader. Unanimous approval was given by Council to purchase a 2013 Volvo Wheel Loader, a 5-year extended warranty and one set of forks and frame from Strongco for a total purchase price of $189,753 plus gst. The approved capital budget was $200,000.