By Kevin J. Sabo
For the Advance
The speedbumps on the south end of 45th St. by the golf-course were again before council during their June 14th meeting, and again things got heated.
The speedbumps were placed on the street by the golf course in May, the second year in a row for them at the location. They were placed at the location in 2020 after residents complained to the Town about the speed of vehicles coming in from the County of Paintearth.
In 2020, three sets of speedbumps were put in place, however, they were positioned in such a way that vehicles could maneuver around them. For the 2021 summer season, administration made the decision to place one aggressive speedbump, and two 40km/hr speedbumps along the road, with the aggressive one at the very end, forcing people to slow down.
The placement of the speedbumps this year also do not allow people to maneuver around them.
The issue of the speedbump placement was brought before council during their previous meeting as well by Coun. Tony Nichols, who felt that the speedbump was in the wrong place, and way too aggressive for the location, and Nichols pointed out that the aggressive speedbump was not the original one placed at the location.
“The one that was there to start with should have been left there,” said Nichols.
“Then it was removed. In my opinion the aggressive one should have been put at the north end, where you have pedestrians crossing around the sports ground and to the restaurant. You have no pedestrians crossing at the south end.”
Coun. Kevin McDougall disagreed with his colleague.
“If you have it at the north end, then you are blowing by 25 houses to help (slow traffic down) the last six,” said McDougall.
Nichols was undeterred.
“But people aren’t crossing at the south end,” said Nichols.
“To me, speedbumps are to alert people that pedestrians can be crossing. Something like (the aggressive speedbump) is something more what you would find in front of the manor. I feel this speedbump should be moved there.”
Chief Administrative Officer Robblee weighed in on the discussion as well, letting council know about some legislative practices surrounding councils.
“If you want something removed, that is a very safe motion from a councillor’s perspective,” said Robblee.
“Removing something carries very little risk. Moving things around (from) where administration put them, for whatever reason…carries some risk as councillors.”
In particular, according to Robblee, council moving things placed by administration could leave the council members open to liability if someone is to get injured due to the change.
“If you make a motion, and make that motion with all reasonableness, the idea that with the information provided to you, you make the best decision you can make,” said Robblee.
“But, if you make a motion, it is possible if someone was to get injured, and doesn’t like the rason for the change, and comes back afterward, all the motions are appealable to the Queens Court of Alberta for personal injury. If you want things moved, general direction (to administration) is a safer motion.
“I can guarantee you, if it is administration’s choice, and it is wrong, insurance covers it.”
Coun. Trudy Kilner said, “I think we put them there for a reason, to slow people down. That aggressive one does do the job, and that’s what we want.”
At the end of the discussion, Coun. Nichols motioned for administration to completely remove the speedbump from the location, which was defeated.
“Couldn’t administration just arbitrarily move it to the middle?” asked Mayor Richard Elhard.
“Administration could be encouraged, offline, to think about moving it,” replied Robblee.
“We can take a look at placement.”