Edmonton Minute: River Talks, Transportation Priorities, and Our Election Candidate Database
Edmonton Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Edmonton politics
This Week In Edmonton:
A busy week for Council begins today at 9:30 am when the City Council Executive Committee meets to discuss a controversial expropriation of a property along the Yellowhead Trail. Tuesday at 9:00 am there will be an Agenda Review Committee meeting, followed at 9:30 am by an Urban Planning Committee meeting. The Urban Planning Committee will, notably, receive a confidential update regarding the proposal to turn Edmonton's River Valley into a national park. We say that a discussion like this should be held in an open forum.
On Wednesday at 9:30 am there will be a Community and Public Services Committee meeting, which will include a discussion on Peace Officer performance. This will be followed on Thursday by the City Manager and City Auditor Performance Evaluation Committee at 8:30 am, conducted in private. Likewise, at 1:30 pm a Non-Regular Executive Committee meeting to discuss appointments to the Edmonton Salutes Committee will also be conducted mostly behind closed doors.
- Finally, on Friday at 9:30 am, there will be a Utility Committee meeting to discuss updates to EPCOR bylaws, as well as a risk assessment of potential coal mines at the head of the North Saskatchewan River, which provides most of Edmonton's water.
Last Week In Edmonton:
Common Sense Edmonton (hey, that's us!) launched an Election Candidate Database. This database features every Mayor and Council candidate's contact information, biography (where provided by the campaigns), and the first batch of long-form interviews with ward candidates hosted by Danielle Smith. There are more than 12 hours of video in there already, so we’ll understand if you don't watch every single one, but at least check out your own ward's candidates! We'll be adding more information to the database, including more bios, candidate survey responses, and more, as the election progresses.
- The Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Board has unanimously decided on 149 transportation projects and categorized them as Top Priorities, Medium Priorities, and Lower Priorities. What they did not do is rank the projects within each group. So what's the top transportation priority of the Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Board? No one really knows.
- The City of Edmonton reduced the business license fee for cannabis stores from $2,500 to $255. The reduction is projected to cost the City over $165,000 and is thus linked to a proposed slight increase in the tax levy starting in 2022. Surely, in an over $2 billion budget, Council could have found some savings to offset this cost, instead of just raising taxes?
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