Edmonton Minute: Hallway Patients, Integrity Investigation, and Excessive Vehicle Noise
Edmonton Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Edmonton politics
This Week In Edmonton:
Council is back from summer break. On Monday, at 9:30 am, there will be a meeting of the Community and Public Services Committee. The Committee will discuss Urban Gardens in public spaces, pesticide use, and the potential for fines and penalties for excessive vehicle noise.
On Tuesday, at 8:30 am, there will be a meeting of the Agenda Review Committee, followed by a 9:30 am meeting of the Urban Planning Committee. The latter Committee will review a report which lays out options for regulating designated driver services. The Committee will also receive a report about expanding the use of pedestrian through zones.
- The Executive Committee will meet on Wednesday at 9:30 am to discuss the Prairie Sky Gondola agreement. If agreed to, the company would pay the City about $1.125 million a year to lease land and for a licence to operate the gondola. There didn’t appear to be anything in the report to address what would happen should Prairie Sky fold up shop, but the company must maintain a minimum of $5 million in a capital reserve fund over the term of the operation to ensure required maintenance can be paid for.
Last Week In Edmonton:
Alberta Health Services directed all inpatient hospital units in the Edmonton zone to bring one admitted patient from the ER to a hallway. The move was intended to take pressure off of emergency departments that are facing capacity issues, and was retracted two days later as numbers dropped. Surely we can fix this issue if we just throw more money at the problem, right? It couldn't be a structural problem with a government-run system, could it?
- Councillor Michael Janz proposed a solution to excessive vehicle noise. He launched a petition suggesting fines of $5,000 for the first offence and $10,000 for subsequent offences, as well as vehicle impoundment and license and registration revocations. We think this seems a little excessive, given fines for impaired driving cap out at $1,000 and the penalty for hitting a pedestrian in a crosswalk is just $810. What do you think? The issue will be discussed further at today’s Council meeting.
- Speaking of Councillor Janz, Edmonton’s Integrity Commissioner found that he broke the code of conduct by retweeting a post that referred to a police officer as a “pig”. Janz said he deleted the retweet once he realized what it contained, admitting that derogatory language is unbecoming of a Councillor. He said he wouldn’t write those words himself but questioned whether the Office of the Integrity Commissioner was the right avenue to deal with the issue. We've made our view on Council's code of conduct clear already - we generally think Councillors should try to be nice people, but it should be up to voters - not City bureaucrats - to deal with them if they're not.
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.