By Kevin J. Sabo
For the Advance
The Village of Halkirk Municipal Development Plan, which was discussed at the Dec. 28th special meeting of council, has hit another snag.
The original plan was to have the plan document finalized during the Jan. 13th council meeting, however, because of staffing changes at Palliser Municipal Planning Services, the document has been pushed back.
The current plan is for village administration to get the updated draft from Palliser by the end of January, and have council review it during a special meeting in the first week of February.
“The girl who was doing it left their employment,” said former Chief Administrative Officer Doris Cordel, who has been helping the new Chief Administrative Officer get up to speed.
“Another person down there has taken it on. Because we are running into a tight timeline, now the plan is to have a new draft document by the end of January. It must be passed by the April. 1st deadline.”
Under section 632 of the Municipal Government Act, which governs local level municipalities, all municipalities in the province must develop a Municipal Development Plan.
A tax sale has been arranged for Feb. 10th.
The property, tax roll 2460, has not had tax payments made in some time, and under the Municipal Government Act, municipalities are able to sell a property at auction to recover lost taxes.
Under the Act, council must set a reserve bid, and based on a recent property assessment the reserve was set at $42,730.
The legal owners of the property have until the day of the sale to pay off the outstanding tax in full.
“The reserve bid must be as close to possible to market value,” said Cordel.
“The lot and plan number (will be) advertised. It will be advertised for one week in a local paper.”
With the hiring, subsequent resignation, and hiring of another subsequent Chief Administrative Officer, the Village of Halkirk’s salary budget line took a hard hit in 2020.
Proposed wages for the 2020 budget were $73,700, however, by the time training and other expenses were factored in, the actual budget was just over $82,000.
With extra training in mind, and with the hiring of Marcy Renschler as the new Halkirk Chief Administrative Officer, the proposed salary budget line is $78,600 which represents a two per cent increase to salaries.
This line item reflects all Village of Halkirk employees, and not just Renschler’s.
With the recent increase to the Shirley McLellan Regional Water Services Commission rates, Village of Halkirk administration reviewed the current rates, and finding them significantly lower than neighbouring municipalities, brought them back to council for review.
“You guys are a little low, and should increase it a bit,” said Cordel.
The base water charge on a Village of Halkirk utility bill was $52 per month.
After review, council determined that the rate should be increased, and authorized a change in the base water rate from $52 to $55 per month for 10 cubic metres of water.
As a comparison, the Town of Castor residents pay $65.50 per month, Coronation pays $71, Alliance pays $56, Consort pays $62.63, and Delia pays $55.