Notes from Council, January 31, 2024

Dear Residents & Ratepayers,

I want to thank Kathy Perley for her dedicated efforts to publish the Champion Chronicle every month. I understand there are some changes occurring over the next little while and details will be worked out soon. With any luck, publication of the Chronicle will not be interrupted. However, for those who are interested, Notes from Council is also published directly on the blog of my website, www.christophernorthcott.com, and I will continue to provide this write-up every month. Councillors Nelson, Logan and Lyckman also do a write-up for the community newsletter in Milo, Lomond and Carmangay respectively. We have also been doing Councillor Reports at one of our regular meetings every month and these reports can be found in the online agenda package.

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December 31, 2023, Notes from Council

Dear Residents & Ratepayers,

I hope everyone has had an enjoyable Christmas with family and friends. This has been a challenging year for many, and the close of a year is an opportunity to reflect and to prioritise what is important.

The Interim 2024 Operating Budget and Capital Plans were approved at the December 6th meeting of Council. Also at this meeting, a delegation from Alberta Health Services provided an update on operating plans for 2023/2024, as well as reforms that are being implemented to reduce emergency room wait times and improve ambulance response times in rural Alberta. Consideration was also provided on overall patient access, be it for surgery or other services.

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Notes from Council, November 30, 2023

Dear Residents & Ratepayers,

This has been a very busy month for County Council between two regular meetings, the Rural Municipalities of Alberta (RMA) Fall convention, as well as two days of budget committee meetings. A 2024 Interim Budget has been referred to County Council for approval, however, the actual tax implications will not be known until after the December 31st, 2023, taxable assessment has been received prior to budget finalization next Spring.

Council enjoyed a very good dialogue with local MLA Joseph Schow when he attended our November 1st meeting, virtually. Some of the conversations we had with him carried over to the meetings that were had with government ministers during the RMA Convention. There remains significant concern regarding the impact of drought conditions on coverage rates for crop insurance in future years. There remains significant concern over the impact of provincial quasi-judicial boards in providing large-scale development approvals (i.e. renewable energy installations, confined feeding operations, etc.). There also remains significant concern over the need, timing, and scope of upgrades to Highway 547 at the North end of Vulcan County.

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