This week, city council meets on Monday, with a continuation scheduled for Wednesday. The emergency advisory committee will meet on Tuesday morning, and a public hearing is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. There's a special council services meeting scheduled for Thursday morning, and a utility committee meeting will take place on Friday.
Key agenda items include the following:
- The proposed 2023-2026 capital budget totals $7.75 billion in spending, including $4.4 billion in previously approved capital growth spending. Administration recommends cutting $57.9 million from the Lewis Farms Community Recreation Centre and Library project to help address a lack of funding for infrastructure renewal. Unfunded capital projects that council will consider include enhanced snow and ice control and implementation of the Bike Plan. The next step is for city council to submit written questions, which will be answered by Nov. 14.
- In an update on the city's work to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's calls to action, administration says the Indigenous Framework has "become the structural scaffolding" to help make its services more responsive and inclusive. The new TRC Municipal Response Plan will address more than 35 of the calls to action.
Here are some of the other new agenda items:
- After engaging thousands of Edmontonians about the 2023-2026 budget, administration found "widespread recognition" that council has hard decisions to make, a need to focus on community safety, and a desire for long-term solutions to climate challenges.
- EPCOR has provided a response to some of council's requests for more information about performance-based rates for drainage services and wastewater treatment. Among other things, the response provides information on EPCOR's workforce, which in 2021 included 479 full-time equivalents (FTEs) for water services, 175 FTEs for wastewater treatment, and 658 FTEs for drainage services. Staff costs in 2021 totalled just under $125 million.
- Administration and EPCOR recommend the development of a watershed management framework to support the City Plan and contribute to city council's climate-related goals. Administration said the framework would "unify all the work underway and provide strategic direction," and its development will be included in the 2023-2026 work plan with no budget implications.
- An updated business plan for Blatchford Renewable Energy projects that 53 townhouses will be connected to the utility by the end of 2022. The customer base is expected to grow to 438 accounts by 2026.
- Bylaw 20273 would result in projected tax penalty revenues of $20.6 million for 2023.
- Bylaw 20274 would achieve the budgeted Assessment and Taxation tax search and certificate revenues of $3.3 million in 2023.
- Bylaws 20292 and 20293 would allow for transit-oriented development at Clareview Town Centre, including medium-rise apartments, row housing, and commercial uses.
- Charter Bylaw 20315 would allow for a new fire station at Blatchford.
Recommendations from committee include:
- A request for information about how to encourage people with lived experience to share their perspectives for the updated Affordable Housing Strategy.
- Direction to pursue options for cost-sharing partnerships to increase small-scale amenities in Edmonton's downtown.
- Direction to pause the Census Policy, which means no municipal census would be undertaken in the next four years.
Image: A graphic depicting the city's approach to reconciliation, to be presented to council on Oct. 31. (Indigenous Framework: Our Guide to Reconciliation