Edmonton Minute: Art Reserve, Snow Policy, and ID Scanners Rejected
Edmonton Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Edmonton politics
This Week In Edmonton:
Kicking things off this busy week, City Council will be meeting today at 9:30 am to discuss a large, 30-item agenda. Included in this will be an update on the Percent For Art policy, a snow and ice policy refresh (much needed), and a 2017-2021 Council Initiatives end of term update. If the meeting doesn't conclude on Monday (spoiler alert, it won't), it will continue on Wednesday at 9:30 am.
Next, on Tuesday at 9:00 am, there will be an Agenda Review Committee meeting, followed by Council Services Committee at 9:30 am which will discuss the 2021 Council Calendar as part of planning for 2022. Later on Tuesday, there will be a City Council Public Hearing at 1:30 pm to discuss 29 zoning amendments, including a provision to protect the Cecil Burgess Residence.
- As discussed above, City Council will very likely resume at 9:30 am on Wednesday, followed on Thursday at 9:30 am by a Non-Regular City Council Public Hearing to discuss the Clean Energy Improvement Pilot Program.
Last Week In Edmonton:
- Ward 8 City Councillor Ben Henderson announced that, after 14 years on Council, he will run for the federal Liberals in the riding of Edmonton Mill Woods. On Sunday, Prime Minister Trudeau visited the Governor General and called a snap election for September 20th.
- City Council's Executive Committee recommended the City move funding for art installations from a percentage of capital projects funding (1% usually) to a more stably funded "art reserve" which will have about $4.5 million in projects for 2021-2022. Now, we're not anti-art, but some of these art projects have not been a good use of taxpayer dollars, including a recent installation on top of the Kathleen Andrews Transit Garage. Retiring Councillor Henderson argued people wouldn't live in Edmonton if art wasn't taxpayer-funded, but, has anyone ever mentioned the aesthetics of the bus garage as a determining factor for where they live?
- In a coup for personal freedom, the Alberta Liquor Store Association said that most of its members do not want ID scanners outside their stores to reduce theft. A pilot project in the City had three liquor stores try it out, seeing a 93% reduction in theft, leading the police to recommend more stores try out the program. However, the Association said those three stores (all owned by the same group) had been explicitly targeted and most stores do not have large theft problems.
Common Sense Edmonton doesn't accept any government funding and never will. We think you should be free to choose, for yourself, which organizations to support. If you're in a position to contribute financially, you can make a donation here.
If you're not in a position to donate, we understand, but if you appreciate our work, you can help by spreading our message. Please email this post to your friends, share it on Facebook or Twitter, and help make sure every Edmontonian knows what's really going on at City Hall.