(File photo)

(File photo)

Town of Castor joining Palliser ISDAB

The Town of Castor is proceeding with an inter-municipal subdivision and development appeal board (ISDAB) being put together by Palliser Municipal Services.

Council made the decision to enter into a contract with Palliser and reviewed a blank version of the required bylaw during the Sept. 26 meeting.

Under the provincial Municipal Government Act, municipalities are required, through bylaw, to establish a subdivision appeal board consisting of seven members made of councillors and members from the public.

The board then would be called to rule on issues and conflicts pertaining to development permits in the town as the need arise. However, for a board to be called together, the town would be on the hook to pay for the clerk and all seven members of the board until the matter is resolved.

By joining the ISDAB, the town is alleviating these costs. While the town would still have to pay to get a clerk, a member of council and a community member trained to sit on the inter-municipal board, once trained, the town would only need to pay the members if they are called to sit.

A number of members within Palliser have chosen to join the ISDAB, and once trained members can serve on a board no matter what community it is called in. If Castor were to need an appeal hearing, Palliser Municipal Services would be notified and a board formed from the participating municipalities.

For Castor, that is a big if. According to chief administrative officer Christopher Robblee, “there is yet to be an SDAB hearing in the town.”

Coun. Kevin McDougall will be the Castor municipal representative to be trained to sit on the ISDAB.

Land-use Bylaw

After reviewing some other municipalities, Robblee returned to council with his findings surrounding tarp-sheds.

According to his findings, there are more member municipalities of Palliser that don’t allow them than do, especially in residential areas. Robblee did note that a number of municipalities did allow the structures in agricultural and industrial areas, and he has updated the draft of the Land Use Bylaw according.

“This is your time to change it,” said Robblee.

With the change, tarp-sheds in the community would become legally non-conforming, which means that they were legal before the bylaw change. The existing structures would be allowed to remain in place, but if taken down would not be allowed to be put back up.

Coun. Cecil Yates made the motion to allow the change stand, and the bylaw will be coming back for readings in a subsequent meeting.

Water and Gas

After having a record low volume of water losses ending in July, losses ending in August have crept back up.

“We have a water break somewhere,” said Robblee.

“It hasn’t come to surface yet.”

According to Robblee, the break isn’t significant, yet. The losses remain around 10 per cent which are still near historical lows for the community.

“We’re going to monitor it,” said Robblee.

Over on the gas system, things continue to go well.

The town is currently sitting at a three per cent surplus for the town-owned utility.

“Gas is doing great,” said Robblee.

Parkland Regional Public Library Services

Castor council has approved the Parkland Regional Library Services 2023 budget.

The budget will see a $0.20 per-capita increase, raising to $8.75 from $8.55.

Total budget for the library for 2023 will be just shy of $2.6 million, up from $2.53 million in 2022.

Municipal Government