On the agenda: District planning, Blatchford infusion, auditor deadlines

On the agenda: District planning, Blatchford infusion, auditor deadlines

· The Pulse

This week, councillors will continue to hear from the public about the proposed district policy, discuss an update on Blatchford utilities, and learn about city auditor recommendations.

There is a utility committee meeting scheduled for June 24 and an audit committee meeting scheduled for June 25. The public hearing for district planning is scheduled to continue on June 25. There is a special council meeting scheduled on June 28 and a city manager recruitment committee meeting scheduled on June 28.

Here are key items on the agenda:

  • The public hearing for the district policy and 15 district plans continues on June 25. The policy and associated plans are to guide development as the city's population grows to two million. When the hearing left off on June 3, some councillors signalled they didn't fully support the policy, citing uncertainty and a lack of trust between council and the public.
  • City administration says the Blatchford renewable energy utility requires a cash infusion of $69 million to be financially sustainable over the long term. This funding is needed by 2028, when the city expects the utility to expand significantly. The proposed cash infusion is scheduled to be discussed at a utility committee meeting on June 24. It requires council approval. An accompanying report said the utility has not experienced any interruptions or concerns over its first five years. City staff expect the utility to be connected to 114 accounts by the end of 2024, and 413 by the end of 2027.
  • The city auditor found the City of Edmonton does not effectively provide equitable access to recreation programming to all residents. The auditor recommends the city engage with the public to identify barriers and programming needs, and create a plan to align efforts. Council's audit committee is scheduled to discuss this on June 25.
  • Administration said it is on target to meet the revised due dates for 12 recommendations from the city auditor that it has not completed. Fifty recommendations are currently outstanding; three have been completed since the last audit committee meeting in April. Half of the recommendations due so far in 2024 have been completed on time. Council's audit committee is scheduled to review the recommendations at a meeting on June 25.
  • Administration has proposed changes to the waste services fiscal policy to redefine how the department measures financial sustainability. The updates to financial indicators would realign the policy to the current economic and regulatory environment, according to a report to be presented at a utility committee meeting scheduled for June 24. The changes require council approval.
  • Council is scheduled to receive a private update about efforts to recruit a new city manager on June 28. Council is also scheduled to hold a private strategic planning session on June 28.

Meetings stream live on YouTube on the Chamber channel and River Valley Room channel.

Photo: Edmonton city council is scheduled to discuss utilities, audits, and district plans. (Mack Male)