Drumheller RCMP report significant reduction in crime rates

Kneehill Logo 2019

Kneehill County held a regular meeting of council on Tuesday Nov. 10, 2020, which was called to order at 8:30 am by Reeve Jerry Wittstock.

The first item on the County’s agenda was item 3.1, the Drumheller RCMP Update. Sgt. Bourque from Drumheller RCMP joined Council via a conference call to present an RCMP update, including the recent crime statistics.

Drumheller RCMP reported the crimes in three categories, there were 19 total persons crimes, 91 total property crimes, and 12 total other criminal codes.

The crime rate has gone down a total of 20% from 2016-2020, and it has gone down 42% from 2019-2020.

For more detailed information on the Drumheller Provincial Detachment Crime Statistics reports, they can be found on the Nov. 10, 2020 Council Package online.

Council accepted the Drumheller RCMP report for information.

The next item on the agenda, item 5.1, the Torrington gravel update, presented by Brad Buchert, Director of Transportation. He provided the Council with a verbal report on the excavation work currently underway in the Torrington area (SE-16) to obtain gravel resources for the County. Recent drill reports show roughly double the gravel resources on-site than originally estimated. The Council accepted the report for information.

The following Policies were presented to Council as part of an ongoing review of current policies. These policies have not been reviewed in over four years.

Agenda item 6.3.1, policy 1-32, ASB Administrative- Pesticide Container Collection, presented by Bowden Clausen. Council confirmed the policy with no changes as recommended by the Ag Service Board.

Agenda item 6.3.2, policy 1-32-1, ASB Administrative- Haying County Road Allowances. Council approved the policy with the changes to the policy to remove the date restricting County operations.

Agenda item 6.3.3, policy 1-32-2, ASB Administrative- Public Land Mowing Agenda, presented by Bowden Clausen. Changes to the policy included removal of procedural points and redundant statements. Council approved the policy as recommended by the Ag Service Board and amended.

Agenda item 6.3.4, policy 1-32-3 ASB Administrative- Stampede Farm Family Award, presented by Bowden Clausen. Updates to the policy include grammatical changes and clarifying phrasing to align with Calgary Stampede/BMO current requirements. The Council approved the changes as recommended by the Ag Service Board.

Next on the County’s agenda is the Request for Decision (RFD) from Kneehill Adult Learning for the Kneehill County to sponsor the cost of the Workshop and Trainer Fees for their upcoming Suicide Prevention Safe Talk Workshop, in the amount of $1,530.00, presented by Mike Haugen. The Council donated $1,530.00 under the Recreation, Community, Arts and Cultural Events grant to Kneehill Adult Learning.

The next item on the agenda, item 9.1, the Investment Growth, presented by Jacqueline Buchanan.

The Province of Alberta published the “Selling Alberta to the World, Investment Growth Strategy,” in Sept. 2020 as a tool to get Alberta’s economy back on track. The Strategy requires municipalities to participate in the “Investment Growth” program to help the province secure investments and create quality jobs.

Council’s Strategic Plan aligns well with these new goals in terms of Ag & Tourism business has been working over the last six months to improve its “investment readiness” and “business friendliness.”

Administration will continue to review and highlight areas of improvement going forward to better align Kneehill County’s strategies with the Province’s new Growth Strategy.

Council accepted the “Selling Alberta to the world, Investment Growth Strategy for information & requested further information on the state of Kneehill County’s “Investment Readiness” to start proactively working on aligning the County’s strategies with those of the Province.

A public hearing on Bylaw 1827, Ag to Ag Business District SW 27-30-25-W4, occurred at 10:00 a.m., presented by Deanna Keiver.

Roger Runnels and Renae Franche have applied to redesignate 0.5 acres from an existing 10.4 acres of land, located on SW 27-30-25 W4, from the Agriculture District to the Agriculture Business District for a commercial greenhouse and to provide retail services and workshops to the public.

Council gave the first reading to this Bylaw at the Oct. 13, 2020 Council meeting. The next step in the development is to provide an opportunity for public comments and feedback prior to passing the Bylaw.

Agenda Item 9.2, the Election 2021 report, appointing of the Returning Officer, and the Substitute Returning Officer.

The next Municipal General Election will take place on Oct. 18, 2021. Administration provided Council with an Election 2021 report and overview, which included some changes made to the Local Authorities Election Act since the last election, and the election processes that require Council approval prior to the election being held, such as the appointment of a Returning Officer, and Substitute Returning Officer.

The 2021 Election information is available for viewing in the Council Package and will be published to the Kneehill County website by Jan. 1, 2021.

Council appointed Carolyn Van der Kuil as the Returning Officer, Mary-Lou Willis as Substitute Returning Officer for the 2021 Municipal Election, and received the Election 2021 Report for information.

Lastly was agenda item 9.7, Fire Bans. Council engaged in a discussion on the County’s current fire ban procedures, and the possibility of enacting a “Harvest Fire Ban,” or introducing other specific bans for locations or activities that pose a significant fire risk in the County.

Council directed administration to bring back further information regarding fire risk management solutions and fire bans to a future Council meeting.

The next County meeting will be held on Nov. 24, 2020 at 8:30 am in Council Chambers.