The following are highlights from the September 14, 2020 Regular Meeting of Council.
Bylaw 1470-A69 – Application for Rezoning – Amendment and Public Hearing
Earlier this year, an application for rezoning was received by administration. The applicant requested that a parcel currently zoned as R2 (residential medium density) be rezoned as RT (residential transition district), allowing for a business to relocate to an existing residential location. The applicant is not intending to live on the site and therefore cannot run the business as a home occupation, which is currently allowed under existing zoning. During the hearing, members of the public spoke both in favour of and against the amendment to the bylaw. After extensive discussion, the amendment was given second and third reading and was passed.
COVID-19 update on Town facilities
Town CAO Todd Becker and Administration provided an update on the planned reopening of certain Town facilities, including the Aquatic Centre, the Library Learning Centre (LLC) and the Arena. Aquatic Centre staff have met the cleaning requirements outlined in that facility’s reopening plan and are therefore able to offer more programs and public swim times. Staff usually tasked with cleaning the LLC have been reassigned to other Town buildings. With current staffing levels, it would be difficult to open the LLC without additional staff to cover shortfalls. The Arena is now open to user groups as of Monday, September 14. Over the next weeks, staff will assess their capacity to properly clean the facility. If the required cleaning can be sufficiently completed to accommodate scheduled activities, administration will consider increasing public access to the facility. Council accepted this report as information.
Town support for sports field users group
In July, the newly-formed Innisfail Community Facility Enhancement Association, comprised of Innisfail residents, approached the Town about working cooperatively to secure funds for upgrades to Town recreational facilities. At that meeting, Town Council committed administrative assistance in the form of Town staff expertise and time. After a review by administration, it was determined that Town staff are currently at capacity and cannot immediately fulfill the needs of the committee. In order to expedite the process, Administration proposed and Town Council approved the use of Town funds to outsource administrative assistance to the group.
New Utilities Bylaw 1648-2020A
new proposed utilities bylaw was presented to Council at the September 8 Agendas & Priorities meeting. Changes from the previous bylaw include a flat-rate charge for new water meters to replace the previous cost-recovery method of billing, an adjusted rate for agricultural (including irrigation) users who will now have the option of a separate metered line, and the addition of a small monthly storm-water system charge that will be applied to each utility customer starting January 1, 2021. After brief discussion, the presented bylaw received the required readings and was passed.
Innisfail Town Council strives to maintain a level of openness with its residents. The highlights above only briefly touch upon the exchanges and decisions reached during the most recent Council meeting. To find full details on the proceedings, click here. Meeting agendas and minutes are available for review.