Stettler town council hears about watershed school programs

Written by ECA Review

Town of Stettler council heard about a watershed organization’s efforts to work with school kids on environmental education. The report was made at the May 3 regular meeting of council. ECA Review/Screenshot

Town of Stettler council heard about a watershed organization’s efforts to work with school kids on environmental education.

The report was made at the May 3 regular meeting of council.

The Battle River Watershed Alliance (BRWA) sent two representatives, Carson Hvenegaard and Sarah Skinner, to give an update on the organization’s efforts.

They explained the alliance management oversees three areas of interest, watershed management, engagement and stewardship and noted that the organization enjoys the membership of a diverse group of stakeholders including governments, industry, the farm community and many more.

The pair showed several maps of the watershed’s sprawling area of responsibility, from Wetaskiwin County in the west to Special Area #3 in the southeast of Alberta.

They noted the BRWA can help communities to conserve water, balance priorities such as economic and ecological, engage with the public on watershed issues and solutions, working with environmental regulations and planning and action for a healthy, resilient watershed.

The BRWA also offers several education programs, including Discover Your Wetland, a field trip program for Grade 5 students, Waste in our Watershed tour, a tour intended to educate Grade 4 students about liquid and solid waste streams and X-Stream Science, a hands-on scientific inquiry program for Grades 7 to 12.

The BRWA also offers two programs aimed at 4-H clubs, a presentation on watersheds and agriculture plus the Stewardship Community Project.

The representatives noted that many students who take their programs may one day be farmers and ranchers in the watershed boundaries.

Councillors accepted the BRWA presentation as information.

Unnecessary police force?
Councillors read a letter from National Police Federation spokesperson Colin Buschman; the NPF is the RCMP’s collective bargaining arm.

“Recently, the NFP completed out Keep Alberta RCMP community engagement tour,” stated Buschman’s letter, who noted the NFP’s final report on that tour had been released.

“The majority of Albertans told us loud and clear that they do not want an expensive police transition to replace the RCMP with a new provincial police service.

“(Albertans stated) the Government of Alberta should make priority investments aimed at improving the justice system, strengthening social services and increasing police resources.

“Participants felt they had not been consulted by the government and that targeted investments would bring better and more immediate results to addressing crime in their communities.”

Buschman also included a full copy of the report for councillors to peruse.

Town CAO Greg Switenky noted a number of tours or consultations are going on regarding the possibility of a provincial police force, including the provincial government and Alberta Municipalities.

Budget summary
Assistant Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Steven Gerlitz noted that the town is still going into its bank account to pay bills. Tax revenue at this time of year is usually low for most municipalities.

Regional water bill
Gerlitz also presented the minutes for the regional water services commission meeting, including information on the annual “true up” on how much water members have used and how much money was paid.

It was noted the Shirley McClellan Regional Water Services Commission would be billed $14,141.57, while the Hwy. #12/21 Regional Water Services Commission would be billed $5,850.21.

Stettler County representative Reeve Larry Clarke told the board the municipality is considering a water line expansion of about 20 km. in the Gadsby area which Gerlitz described as, “much, much needed.”

Councillors unanimously approved the water committee meeting minutes.

Stu Salkeld
Local Journalism Initiative reporter
ECA Review

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