M.D. of Lesser Slave River Council notebook

May 22, 2023 meeting

Pearl Lorentzen
Lakeside Leader

Community Futures Lesser Slave River

Josh Friesen, executive director of Community Futures Lesser Slave Lake, presented to council. Community Futures provides business loans, economic development, and other business supports to the area. In the last three years, Community Futures has grown from three staff to eight. It recently received grants for various projects. One is to do some business training with nine First Nations and three Métis settlements in the area. One is for economic development. Another is for multicultural events.

“This multicultural aspect is going to be huge,” said Deputy Reeve Lana Spencer.

Community Futures’ human resource training course has been in development for a while. It will be released soon.

CAO evaluation committee

After a bit of discussion, council passed a bylaw to establish a committee of three people to make sure that someone is hired each year to do a CAO evaluation.

Appearing via video, Councillor Brad Pearson asked, “why the limited number on the committee? Why not the whole council?”

“If you want the whole council, there’s no reason to have a committee,” answered Councillor Nancy Sand. A committee is “more streamlined.”

Councillor Norm Seatter agreed. It was hard enough to find a time that worked for three people to meet, let alone the whole council.

This will be one of the standing committees which are appointed in October.

Once it was clear it wasn’t an ad hoc committee, Councillor Pearson accepted the idea.

“It makes sense, so we don’t let it slide again,” said Reeve Murray Kerik.

Council made all three readings and passed the bylaw.

They then rescinded a previous motion to do with this and appointed Reeve Kerik, Deputy Reeve Spencer, and Councillor Seatter to the committee.

Visitor Information Centre internet

M.D. and the Town of Slave Lake split the costs of the Visitor Information Centre. Slave Lake Communications had approached the two about putting fiber optic cable to the VIC for internet.

“The internet there is pretty sketchy,” said CAO Barry Kolenosky.

The town was interested. However, M.D. council wanted more information.

Councillor Seatter wondered if internet from the main office across the road could be beamed over.

Councillor Pearson wanted to have more quotes, rather than decide on something with information from a single source.

Deputy Reeve Spencer asked if the government grants for high speed internet applied or were only for residential.

Only residential was the answer.

“We defer until more information comes to light,” said Councillor Pearson, making a motion for administration to gather more information.

Compact track loader

The M.D. received nine bids to replace a compact track loader. Only two were over budget, and admin recommended the lowest bid of $119,800 for a Takeuchi from SMS Equipment.

Staff had tried out one in Flatbush, said Cody Borris, transportation and facilities maintenance manager.

“They make pretty good equipment,” said Councillor Pearson.

Council agreed with administration and chose the Takeuchi.

Canyon Creek Campground

The Canyon Creek Recreation Association runs the Canyon Creek Campground and Harbour for the M.D. CCRA asked for a renewal of the agreement to allow onsite liquor sales on the patio of the camp store. They had done it the year before as a pilot.

“As long as there’s no off sales,” said Councillor Sandra Melzer.

People can’t even take it to their campsite, said Kolenosky.

Council approved the sale of alcohol at the patio from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m (and 11 p.m. for special occasions which was most days).

Council also made a motion to add alcohol sales to the agreement between the two organizations making it clear that any costs and profits from the sales are solely the responsibility of CCRA.

Working group on crime

M.D. council appointed Councillor Seatter to attend the new working group on crime being organized by the Slave Lake RCMP. A member of M.D. administration may also attend.

“I think it is a good thing,” said Councillor Nancy Sand.

M.D. of Lesser Slave River is looking into grooming beaches at Marten Beach and west Fawcett Lake. It already grooms Devonshire Beach.

Councillor Norm Seatter asked that administration look into getting permission from the province to groom the beach at Marten Beach.

Deputy Reeve Lana Spencer asked administration to apply for permission for West Fawcett Lake as well.

Seniors Week

The M.D. has a bylaw prohibiting it from proclaiming weeks or days. Therefore, didn’t make one for seniors week. However, council left it up to administration if they wanted to put something on the M.D.’s website.

“I think it’s important to acknowledge our seniors,” said Councillor Seatter.

“Then it’s nice to do EMS Week,” said Councillor Sandra Melzer.

Deputy Reeve Spencer made a motion to bring back the bylaw for review. “I’ve always had a problem with it,” she said.

“We should unofficially celebrate our seniors,” said Councillor Nancy Sand.

Smith Bridge truss repair

Administration asked the engineers for more information on the tender for Smith bridge truss repairs. It turns out, some costs were misunderstood, so it was under budget.

Closed session

After a closed session, council came back into open session and made two motions.

Councillor Seatter moved not to approve any Community Assistance Board funding to the Trailduster Horse Club of Smith, Alberta. This was carried.

Seatter followed that up with a motion to direct administration send a written request to Trailduster Horse Club inviting them to a council meeting. This was carried.

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