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Wood Environment & Infrastructure Solutions (Lindbrook Estates Water Management Study)
At the October 6, 2021 Council Meeting, Council reviewed the proposal provided by Wood Environment & Infrastructure Solutions but declined to proceed with a Water Management Study with respect to the Lindbrook Estates drainage issue.

Subsequent to that meeting, Administration and representatives from Wood met with the landowner directly downstream of the County’s Municipal Reserve. While no one solution was agreed to, multiple solutions were discussed and further Council direction was required to proceed.

Glenn Newman and Gord Holman, Wood Environment and Infrastructure Solutions attended the November 3rd Council meeting to review work completed to date, and answered Council’s questions regarding the proposed water management study.

Council passed a motion to defer a decision on the Lindbrook Estates drainage issue pending legal and operational review.

Council also passed a motion to authorize the release of the July 31, 2020, Lindbrook Drainage Assessment Report.

Health and Safety Overview
Cindy Cox, Health and Safety Coordinator, provided Council with an overview of the Beaver County Health and Safety Management System.

FOIP Overview
Cindy Cox, FOIP Coordinator, provided Council with an overview on the Alberta Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Battle River Watershed Alliance (BRWA)
At the October 27, 2021, Organizational meeting, Council requested additional information regarding the Battle River Watershed Alliance to determine whether Council representation on the Board is beneficial.

The Battle River Watershed Alliance is made up of the people who live, work and play in the Battle River and Sounding Creek watersheds. They are landowners, community members, business people, researchers, and decision-makers and they work together to ensure a stable economy, healthy natural areas, and resilient communities in the place that they love.

The Membership of the organization consists of and is open to all organizations and individuals that live or operate in the Battle River Watershed and/or whose interests are consistent with the objectives of the Society. 

In order to become a Member of the BRWA, an application form must be completed and submitted. 

Council passed a motion authorizing Cr. Pederson, on behalf of Beaver County; to submit an application for membership to the Battle River Watershed Alliance.

ASB Producer at Large Member
At the October 27, 2021 Organizational meeting of Council, administration was directed to enquire whether the two Producer at Large Members, with terms expiring, would be interested in remaining on the Board since the COVID 19 pandemic had interrupted their previous term.

Administration followed up with the two members and one member, Matt Micklich, has indicated that he would like to remain on the Board. 

Council passed a motion appointing Producer at Large (PAL) Member Matt Micklich to the Agricultural Service Board and directing administration to advertise for the vacant position.

Community Support Requests
Council passed a motion to approve a Community Support capital grant request of $2325 to the Viking Municipal Library for a multi-use printer and to approve a Community Support capital grant request of $13,181.84 to the Cloverlodge Stampede Association for a spectator shelter.

Request for 2021 Tax Payment Agreement
Axiom Oil and Gas Inc. acquired the oil and gas assets of Tidewater in early 2021.  They wish to pay the property taxes, but do not have the cash flow to pay the entire amount ($350,751.43) by the 2021 due date.

They proposed a tax payment agreement that will provide a $100,000 payment before the November 2, 2021 penalty date and 3 subsequent payments by the end of February 2022.  Due to expenses associated with plant turnarounds, they will not be able to make a payment in December.

Axiom has never requested a tax payment agreement in the past and their payment schedule is aggressive.  They are prepared to make the November 1st payment (before Council has made a decision on their request) as a show of good faith.

Axiom is requesting that Council waive the 6% penalty in November 2021 and the 3% penalty in January 2022. 

Council passed a motion that Beaver County enter into an agreement with Taxpayer #22861 for payment of the 2021 property taxes over four (4) months and waive the November 2021 and January 2022 late payment penalties

Emergency Medical Response Times
At the October 6, 2021 Regular Council meeting, Council reviewed a letter that the County of Vermilion River sent to the Minister of Health, expressing a concern that fire fighters are waiting too long for emergency medical personnel to arrive on scene.  This jeopardizes the quality of care that rural residents receive.

Council requested that administration contact Beaver Emergency Medical Services (BEMS) and the Beaver Emergency Services Commission (BESC) to determine if a similar situation occurs in the Beaver Region.

The Executive Director of BEMS indicated that the ambulance service has seen sustained increases in call volumes of 25% - 40% due to COVID-19, but he does not believe that these increases have had a negative impact on response times.

The Chief Administrative Officer of BESC disagrees.  He believes that unnecessary delays have occurred because no ambulances are on “stand-by” when a station becomes vacant.  Additionally, some fire fighters have advanced medical skills but are not permitted to use these skills in their fire fighter role, and must wait for an ambulance attendant.

Council passed a motion that Council forward concerns regarding emergency medical response times to the Minister of Health.

Bridge File #78646 Design Proposal
In the 2021 budget, administration had budgeted to replace a bridge structure south of Holden using revenue of 75% from Alberta Transportation’s STIP grant and 25% from the Claystone Waste dividend. Unfortunately, the County was unsuccessful in their grant application. For 2022, administration is anticipating on re-applying for the same project and therefore did not include money in the 2021 budget to prepare a design for a different bridge structure

In late summer, Public Works employees performed maintenance work on a set of large diameter culverts south of Viking, BF 78646.  Due to the lower water levels this year because of lack of rainfall, the structures are in a far worse state than originally believed. Due to timeline constraints of the deadline of Alberta Transportation’s STIP grant, Administration directed Wood to proceed with the design of a replacement structure and provide the County with a cost estimate before the application deadline so that an application can be submitted by November 30th. If successful, this structure will be replaced in the summer/fall of 2022. If not successful, Administration is investigating options of downgrading this structure from a Bridge, as it is the most upstream structure on this creek, and replacing it with a set of 3-4 smaller culverts, which would be less expensive.

Council passed a motion authorizing the design proposal for Bridge File 78646 provided by Wood Environment & Infrastructure Solutions in the amount of $49,500 to allow for the design of a replacement bridge structure in order to apply for funding under Alberta Transportation’s Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program by the application deadline of November 30, 2021.

Health Foundation Support Policy
The Health Foundation Support Policy provides support to each of the two health foundations in the Beaver Region (Tofield and Viking).  Funding is provided for equipment and other items not eligible for funding by Alberta Health Services.

The current Policy distributes the funding based on the rural population within the Foundation’s service area.  Tofield Health Foundation’s service area includes ranges 17-21 (64.3% of the total population).  Viking Health Foundation’s service area includes ranges 10-16 (35.7% of the total population).

At the October 6, 2021 Council meeting, a motion was passed that the Policy be reviewed to allow for an equal distribution of the grant between the two Foundations.

A motion to approve the amended Health Foundation Support Policy to provide equal funding to the Tofield and Viking Health Foundations, effective January 1, 2022 was defeated.

Council then passed a motion that administration request input from the area Health Foundations on the proposed changes to the Health Foundation Support Policy.

Municipal Development Plan (MDP) and Land Use Bylaw (LUB) Review
The County’s existing MDP and LUB were approved in 1998. Both documents have had some amendments but need updating to reflect changes to the community, keep up with changing development demands, modernize regulations, and minimize red tape for residents and stakeholders.

Administration advised Council that a Request for Proposal (RFP) will be issued to secure a Consultant to provide Beaver County with a comprehensive review and update of the MDP and LUB, make changes so that the MDP and LUB are more aligned with existing County policies and Provincial requirements, and address a number of key issues and areas that administration believes need to be addressed.

Future Dates
Council passed a motion to support Cr. Hrabec's intent to pursue the position of Zone 5 Director for the Rural Municipalities of Alberta.

Council passed a motion to appoint Cr. Smook and Cr. Williams to a subcommittee to shortlist the consultants for the CAO recruitment.

Closed Session

Recruitment of Interim Chief Administrative Officer
Council passed a motion to advertise internally and externally for an interim Chief Administrative Officer to carry out Chief Administrative Officer responsibilities as well as implementation of the Corporate Governance Review.

Future Dates
The next Regular Council Meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday, November 17, 2021, commencing at 9:30 am.

For more information, contact Beaver County toll free at 1-866-663-1333 or 780-663-3730.

Did you know…our website is a useful way to get the information you need. www.beaver.ab.ca

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