Deputy Mayor Dean Lane attended the April 30 Flagstaff Waste Management meeting and brought forth information to council regarding the current state of the recycling program in the County and how all municipalities in Alberta are facing the same challenges.
Lane went on to explain that as of Jan. 1, 2018 China who was one of the biggest importers of recycling passed stringent rules stipulating what waste materials will be accepted and have lowered the contamination rate.
China will not import a lot of the plastic and paper that they use to and the contamination rate is set around 0.5 per cent creating problems for many countries that relied on shipping their recyclables to China.
Not properly cleaning your recycled items or mixing them in with garbage can make a whole load unacceptable if it goes over the new contamination rates.
Staples left in paper, sauces smeared on cardboard, broken glass mixed with plastic are just a few examples of how recycling can become contaminated.
“Do you pay someone to go through it all or just throw it in the landfill?” Lane commented.
It can be an expensive process to clean it and a potential loss of revenue if the recycled items are rejected.
The lack of markets for plastic is also a huge concern. Council went on to discuss whether consumer demand for less plastic used or changing Alberta’s packaging laws regulating companies to not over package items will be the positive way forward in dealing with a serious issue that needs to be rectified sooner than later.
Proposed Changes to Intermunicipal Development Plan
On March 21 the public had the chance to attend an open house discussing changes to the Intermunicipal Development Plan (IDP for the Town of Hardisty and Flagstaff County).
Over 50 people from town and county attended and were able to ask Municipal Planning Service representatives the changes regarding jointly administered municipal reserve areas and how these will be managed, new requirements from the Municipal Government Act, and definitions of Multi-Lot Country Residential development area.
The insertion and expansion of Plan Area due to regionally significant aquifers was one of the changes also discussed as it was developed to encourage more communication between the town and county when proposed developments in these locations could impact the town’s drinking water source.
Council has accepted these and other changes and passed the first reading of Bylaw 1228/18 “Town of Hardisty and Flagstaff County Intermunicipal Development Plan” which proposes to repeal Bylaw 1150/09.
A public hearing is set for May 22 in Hardisty to give public a further chance to voice any concerns.
Citizens Advisory Committee
Coun. Penny Wurz attended the Citizens Advisory Committee on May 7. Wurz told council that traffic reports have gone up 300 per cent and will continue to rise as the Killam Detachment has made traffic stops one of their priorities.
“The benefit of that has been, other than making the roads safer, people are knowing they are out there and they are catching a lot of stuff.” commented Wurz.
During these stops they have handed out tickets for a variety of infractions including driving without a license, no insurance, drug possession, impaired drivers and discovering people who have warrants out for their arrest.
The local detachment is down one member but is expecting a new Sergeant in the near future.