By Sarah Baker
Discussions of Ukraine humanitarian efforts, a public hearing, and the Gus Wetter Grade 5 and 6 class being in attendance were things of note at the April 5 County of Paintearth council meeting.
Donation for Ukraine humanitarian efforts
A request had been made of the council to make a donation in order to assist Ukraine as part of a challenge initiated by Lamont County to help provide aid and humanitarian efforts to those impacted.
The situation in Ukraine has taken everyone off-guard, said chief administrative officer (CAO) Michael Simpson.
“Council is responding to a humanitarian cause that, while happening around the globe, is touching hearts at home,” said Simpson.
Some concerns were brought forward by council members about how best to handle the situation and where the money should be donated.
“The county will review various efforts and select where to place their pledge funding based on how direct the impact will be,” said Simpson.
Council has pledged $5,000 to match Lamont County’s call to action, said Simpson.
“Council feels that joining with other Alberta rural municipalities to send a message of hope is the morally responsible thing to do,” said Simpson.
Public hearing on the land use bylaw
The public hearing saw many residents come forward to talk about their worries regarding the land use bylaw.
One of the main issues brought forward by many in attendance was the removal of the word “grandfathering.”
The term grandfathering is not used in the Municipal Government Act (MGA) therefore administration has proposed deleting the grandfathering language in order to align with the MGA, according to Simpson.
“The proper term for a development that was authorized under a land use bylaw is ‘non-conforming use’ or ‘non-conforming building’ as outlined by section 643 of the MGA,” said Simpson.
Class in session
The meeting was attended by Gus Wetter School Grade 5 and 6 classes as part of their studies.
Council was delighted to have the class from Gus Wetter attend as part of their studies on local government, according to Simpson.
“Paintearth county was thrilled to have these kids out, be engaged and ask questions on how things work,” said Simpson.
It was encouraging to see the students take part and show interest during the meeting, said Simpson.
“The more these students are familiar with things now, the greater chance that they’ll be involved at a younger age at steering their own fate in community building rather than relying on others to make governance choices for them,” said Simpson.
During councillor reports, Sandy Shipton reporterd that there is a COVID-19 outbreak at the Castor Lodge.
A cribbage tournament was hosted at the Fleet Hall which made enough to buy new curtains, according to Coun. Dale Norton during his report.