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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Notes from Council, October 27, 2023

Dear Residents & Ratepayers,

I hope any outstanding harvesting was concluded before the weather turned this week. For those looking to get out of the house, tickets are still available for the District-20 (Champion) Fire Association fundraiser on November 4th at the Champion Community Hall. While tickets are available at the front counter of the Vulcan County Office, they can be purchased around Champion and from most members of the fire association.

After my last Notes from Council was printed in the Champion Chronicle, I issued a correction in the online version (on my website) regarding the matter of council remuneration. The correction reads: “While the external review recommended a ten percent increase to council remuneration (which was approved in November 2022), the more recent internal review data has shown that Vulcan County remains at least fifteen percent behind the market rates (when compared to other municipalities). As such, Council has approved a one-time increase of fifteen percent, in addition to the ten percent that was approved last year, for inclusion in the 2024 budget.” Information regarding these changes can be found on my website, along with my expense reports, and I welcome your feedback on this issue.

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