Council decided to amend the operating budget for 2023 at their regular Hanna town council meeting on Tues. Dec. 13.
The amendment was removing the money from the budget to purchase two new vehicles and instead put the money in reserves.
Councillors including Coun. Sandra Beaudoin didn’t see the need for new trucks for either parks or public works.
“What is the need for an additional truck? I’m just wondering why that is a good use of taxpayers’ money and whether or not the staff can utilize the vehicles they already have. If they are still in good running order why do we need to replace them,” said Beaudoin.
After discussion Beaudoin made a motion to amend the budget removing the purchase of the two trucks which was carried.
The budget was passed unanimously as amended.
Real estate Services RFP
A motion was made during the meeting for CAO Kim Neill to be authorized to bring forward a request for proposals (RFP) from real estate services for the 2023/24 year.
The motion was carried unanimously however during the discussion initially there was some opposition.
“The downside to doing an RFP which is a long process for four per cent of a $20,000 property is with $800 dollars minus expenses, he’s making $100 bucks if he’s lucky,” said Coun. Sandra Murphy. “Most RFPs are in the $5000 to $10,000 price range, that is where we start and in my opinion, it is irresponsible to go through an RFP process.”
Water cost increase
Hanna council unanimously approved the Municipal Public Utilities Bylaw increasing the price of water from $2.94 per cubic metre to $3.00 effective Jan. 1, 2023.
RCMP quarterly report
Sgt. Robert Welsman presented the local RCMP’s second quarter review during the town council meeting.
From the report, a few numbers stood out compared to previous years including a 200 per cent increase from 2021 to 2022 in possession of stolen goods.
“That is one incident versus three incidents, and has remained fairly steady between zero and four incidents taking place during the second quarter,” said Welsman.
Another issue brought forward was motor vehicle theft during this time of year.
“Obviously with things being colder there have been some previous instances of that and it does sometimes happen when people are running their cars trying to keep them warm so we just wanted the community to be aware of that.”
Getting into the schools to do presentations has also been a focus during the quarter which has had a really positive reception, said Welsman.
“We are focusing mainly on drug and substance as we were asked to do so earlier in the year discussing things like vaping, alcohol use and drug use.”
While the local Citizens On Patrol (COP) program hasn’t restarted since the pandemic the rural crime watch is active and will now have an in-town portion.
It isn’t a substitute to reporting to the police but it is a quick way of neighbours letting other neighbours know if they see something suspicious, said Welsman.
“The people in the rural crime watch understand there is a connection to things that happen in town and things that happen in the country.”