Starland County ups snow plow rates

Written by Terri Huxley

With the anticipation of snowfall in the coming weeks, Starland County council took a look at the snow plow rates policy established in 2001 for the purpose of plowing private residence laneways and snow removal.

Rates were set at $50 charged to the landowner any time a laneway is cleared and an additional $120 would be applied if more work and time were needed for snow removal and other situations.

Council chose to increase these two rates at their most recent meeting on Wed. Oct. 27 to $75 for laneway plowing and $140 per hour for other plowing such as bin yards, etc.

Hanna medical support

Each year, Starland County provides a portion of funds for its eastern residences to Hanna & District Medical Corporation as part of their annual budget for doctor recruitment and retention efforts.

Starland County pays $55.98 per capita for 190 people.

This year’s budget from the corporation has increased for the Town of Hanna, Special Areas and Starland due to the loss of revenue from Dr. Imarhaigbe leaving and a new physician undergoing their three month assessment.

The corporation also offers six-months of free rent as an incentive for physicians to move to the area.

At the recent meeting, council motioned to pay the 2022 requisition to the Hanna Medical Corporation in the amount of $10,636.20.

Organizational meeting

At the organizational meeting held the same day as the regular meeting, all five councillors were sworn in including newcomer Mark Landry for Division 1.

Steve Wannstrom remained as Reeve and Bob Sargeant took up the position of deputy reeve once again.

Regular council meeting dates were kept at the second and fourth Wednesday of each month beginning at 9 a.m.

Drumheller ATB Financial was listed as the authorized bank of the county but it was proposed by administration to change this to the Morrin ATB branch in that this branch is located right in the Starland County office building so “it works out handy here”.

Council agreed with this change.

A key piece of the conversation lied in council remuneration.

The last time these prices were scrutinized was in 2008, prompting a review.

Council agreed collectively to increase councillor and non-council member compensation from $200 per full day and $120 per half day to $250 per day and $135 per half day after seeing comparison prices from similar municipalities.

In this comparison, Starland was well below the minimum compensation rate ($259 for a full day) and still does at this increased rate of $250.

The minimum average rate for half day is at $134.

Milage will remain at the federal government rate (currently 51 cents per km) which is revised quarterly.

Meal allowances remain at $57 for a full day and $32 for a half day.

Closed session

Council went into a closed session to discuss energy company Apogee and their tax agreement with the county under Section 16 of the FOIP Act RSA 200 – Disclosure harmful to business interests of a third party.

Once out, a motion was made to add a clause to the Apogee tax payment agreement that upon sale of the company, all property taxes are payable in full.

Seed Cleaning Plant draft documents

Council agreed to enter into the loan agreement, collateral mortgage, and security agreement with the Starland Seed Cleaning Plant Ltd.


Terri Huxley

ECA Review

About the author

Terri Huxley

Terri grew up on a grain farm near Drumheller, Alberta with an eye for the beautiful and uncharted. Living in such a unique and diverse area has helped her become the photographer and reporter she is today.

Coming from the East Central region getting this newspaper on her dinner table growing up, it helped her understand the community she now serves.

In May 2019, Terri was awarded Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association (AWNA) Canada's Energy Citizens Photographic Awards Sports Action – First Place as well as first for the same sports action image nationally with the Canadian Community Newspaper Association (CCNA). Fast forward to 2020, she has won second in the same category for the AWNA.