Rocky Mountain House passes inspection

An Alberta Municipal Affairs inspection of Rocky Mountain House finds no serious problems.

A provincial inspection of the Town of Rocky Mountain House found some “irregularities” but no serious red flags.

The 150-page Alberta Municipal Affairs report makes 47 recommendations but makes no directives to improve its operations.

“Overall, I was very pleased,” said Mayor Fred Nash. “We’ve been open and transparent in front of our public.

“I think the town is doing a terrific job. There’s a lot of really, really good points (in the report) but no directives,” said Nash, who first saw the report on Tuesday and has not gone through it in detail with council and administration yet.

“What I’ve read so far is there are some things they say we do very well and some areas we need to improve still.”

Council will be following up on each of the recommendations, he said.

Inspectors found some issues but say the town was generally being run well.

“While some aspects of the municipality have been managed in an irregular manner, the inspectors are of the opinion that overall, the municipality is not being managed in an irregular, improper or improvident manner,” says the report posted by the town on its website on Wednesday.

“Significant ongoing strategic efforts were also evident and officials typically demonstrated good intent.”

Eight key recommendations were identified including: conduct councillor training and a core service review, update the council procedural bylaw, improve financial reporting and improve public communications and access to bylaws.

Inspectors also recommended the town review its planning documents and off-site levies, establish performance measures and communicate the results and promote FireSmart practices.

Nash believes the inspection results will reinforce confidence in council and administration.

He points out inspectors found 87 per cent of those surveyed on the town’s overall service delivery rated themselves as average, satisfied or very satisfied. Only 13 per cent were unsatisfied or very unsatisfied.

Town council voted last year to ask for an inspection in response to a petition — which fell short of the required number of signature — from dissatisfied residents asking the province to review management of the town

The province began a preliminary review anyway. Before that was done, council opted to clear the air with the formal inspection request.

pcowley@bprda.wpengine.com

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