Plastics, packaging resolutions pitched

Red Deer civic leaders are pushing for less product packaging and non-recyclable goods across Canada.

Red Deer civic leaders are pushing for less product packaging and non-recyclable goods across Canada.

City council are submitting two resolutions to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, which will be voted upon during its annual conference to be held in Toronto in May.

Councillor Gail Parks is hoping the representatives of more than 1,775 municipalities will agree that manufacturers should be pushed more by Ottawa to offer biodegradable or compostable plastics.

She told council on Monday how she feels bad about having to throw away a ketchup bottle into the garbage because it can’t be recycled.

“I just don’t know who is pressing the manufacturers to make it compostable or recyclable,” said Parks who submitted the resolution on recyclables. “Maybe it will take the federal government, on behalf of FCM, to make that change.”

Councillor Lorna Watkinson-Zimmer submitted a resolution that urges the federal government to encourage manufacturers to limit their use of packaging. It should only be necessarily used for shipment, safety, hygeine and acceptance by the customer.

Shoppers ultimately foot the bill for excess unwanted boxes and wrappings; and excess packaging represents 17 per cent of the household food budget, according to Watkinson-Zimmer.

Watkinson-Zimmer said the United Kingdom is one country that has passed regulations to minimize the amount of packaging used. These rules were passed in 2003.

After council gave its support, Mayor Morris Flewwelling said he’s hopeful these resolutions will be passed at the national meeting.

• • •

Red Deer city council endorsed the Downtown Business Association’s 2010 budget on Monday.

The association’s submitted budget is $383,000, slightly up from the 2009 budget of $368,400.

The association guides the progress of Red Deer’s central business district which contains about 480 businesses.

Part of the association’s mandate is to ensure the downtown is clean, safe and attractive.

• • •

Dog owners are invited to apply to have their pet spayed or neutered for free.

As part of a project approved by council in 2005, $2 from each dog tag sold last year will be used to fund a clinic to spay and neuter dogs.

The City of Red Deer, the Red Deer and District SPCA and Alberta Animal Services offer the program to keep Red Deer’s dog population in check.

Interested applicants must apply by 4:30 p.m. on Friday March 26.

Forms are available online at www.reddeer.ca/inspections, through the Inspections and Licensing Department at City Hall, the SPCA at 4505 77th St., and Alberta Animal Services at 4640 61st St. Applications cannot be submitted online.

Successful applicants will find out by April 7. The procedure must be performed no later than May 28.

ltester@bprda.wpengine.com

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