Deputy Mayor, Robert Pulyk, chaired and welcomed everyone to Vermilion Town Council’s first meeting of 2019 on January 15.
Councillor Clint McCullough took the oath to be appointed Deputy Mayor for February and March.
Derek Young noted that a new sewer inspection camera is part of the 2019 budget, and that the town is currently renting one, as their previous one went down.
“The one we would like most is the Ridgid SeeSnake Self-leveling from Vermilion Plumbing & Heating because the repair component is local versus having to ship parts across the country, and it is within budget,” said Young.
Councillor Yaceyko made the motion, and Councillor Barr said, “Ridgid is a very well known company. We want to look at it for the long run and make sure these things are user friendly, reliable, and easy to work with; I support this.”
Including an SR20 locator, the total cost is $17,196.00, and the motion was carried.
Regarding the ICSC Conference in Whistler, British Columbia, Councillor McCullough moved to rescind motion 1812-181. Council’s previous decision to boycott the conference was then discussed.
“I’m all in favour of being pragmatic and examining our decisions if new information has come forward, but after talking with people in the community, it seemed like there was support for our decision,” said Councillor Justin Thompson.
“I’m tired of taking blows from other parts of Canada,” added Councillor Tannis Henderson.
Deputy Mayor Pulyk noted that a call had been received from an international company wanting to bring business to Vermilion in 2019, and wanting to meet in Whistler. He said, “It appears that a lot of networking is paying off. Creating jobs and opportunities; I’d hate to miss out on that opportunity.”
Councillor Yaceyko noted that after finding out that council would not be able to get the $2,500 back for their accommodations, he felt that it would not be fair for taxpayers.
“We’ve determined that economic development is the driver in this town. One of the things we need to do is be out there,” said Councillor Barr.
Councillor Henderson added, “Nothing is final with a phone call. In all the years we’ve attended Whistler, there’s been no direct economic impact on our community.”
With four in favour, and two opposed, the motion was carried to rescind motion 1812-181. A second motion was made regarding the ISCS conference in Whistler, that Council for the Town of Vermilion express its displeasure with the actions and comments of the Mayor of Whistler, BC, by writing to the Mayor, and asking the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) to write on behalf of all members of the association to the Mayor of Whistler and the President of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) to express Albertans displeasure, and finally, that a letter be written to the Economic Developers Alberta (EDA) asking them to aggressively lobby to move the annual International Council of Shopping Centers Conference (ICSC) to Calgary or Banff.
The motion was unanimously carried.
Regarding physician recruitment and retention, it was noted that the County of Minburn had sent a letter saying that they will contribute the requested $1 per capita.
In Council Round Table, Councillor Henderson noted that the recent Critters game held to kick off the facility enhancement fundraising was very successful. Councillor Yaceyko noted that the Vermilion River Watershed Alliance had been given a presentation on an upcoming project working with students who will run a monitoring program over a six year period.
“I think it could really benefit, especially after our new Wastewater Treatment Plant to see what happens downstream,” said Yaceyko.
Councillor Thompson noted that during the Public Safety and Protective Services meeting, he learned that the Vermilion Citizens on Patrol is at risk of having to fold due to lack of members. If you would like to volunteer, you can call Elna at 780-853-6802. He also noted that the Library Book Reading event was very successful. “In an environment meeting we were given brown field options; things are looking a lot more optimistic. We are also looking into a re-use facility for diverting waste,” said Thompson.
Councillor McCullough said that there had been a critical disaster with the ACE water pipe exploding south east of Marwayne from which 1,000 cubes of water was lost. “It’s all under warranty, but it’s a delay,” said McCullough.
Councillor Barr said, “I attended the Critters game and it was so awesome seeing the look on the children’s faces was worth the price of admission alone. I’ve also been seeing really good things about programs coming out of the library.”
Deputy Mayor Pulyk attended the Science and Engineering Research Panel of Canada on January 14, and noted that Lakeland College has put an application in for crops and livestock. The $350,000 for five years would support a Technology Access Centre. As partners, he felt the Town of Vermilion would see a lot of economic spin-off for the community, and benefits for both Lakeland College and Vermilion.
“There is a gap in technology between Edmonton and Saskatoon. Vermilion is the perfect location, and Lakeland College is well suited for this,” said Pulyk who added that they will be waiting to hear for the next couple of months.