Council puts the brakes on anti-idling bylaw

Red Deer will not introduce an anti-idling bylaw. Council dismissed administration’s recommendation to explore the option to tackle the city’s poor air quality on Monday. Mayor Tara Veer said the air quality challenges are bigger than Red Deer alone. She said the city has to work with other municipalities in the region.

Red Deer will not introduce an anti-idling bylaw.

Council dismissed administration’s recommendation to explore the option to tackle the city’s poor air quality on Monday.

Mayor Tara Veer said the air quality challenges are bigger than Red Deer alone. She said the city has to work with other municipalities in the region.

But it was enforcing a potential bylaw that forced council to put on the brakes.

Veer said that city is currently reviewing all its bylaws, RCMP non-emergency calls and enforcement efforts.

“Council may move down this road in the future but I think there was reluctance tonight because we have that enforcement review underway,” she said.

Coun. Lawrence Lee said the city would be forced to spend countless dollars on hiring and training staff and equipment in order to pursue the potential initiative. He suggested that Mayor Tara Veer proclaim Red Deer an idle-free city.

“It would probably have more of an effect than any bylaw,” said Lee.

Most councillors agreed that strengthening the education component of the city’s anti-idling campaign will be key to getting motorists to turn off their engines. The decision came after council heard the annual update on the idle-free public education campaign.

Nancy Hackett, the city’s environmental services supervisor, said progress has been made since the program began in 2010. Hackett said the city is generally meeting its targets in the Environmental Master Plan except for the particulate matter which the city exceeds Canada-wide standards.

“We have been doing this for six years,” said Hackett. “We know that some people will not make that behavioural shift with education alone.”

The city researched 69 Canadian examples where there are various bylaws. There are seven Alberta municipalities with anti-idling including Banff, Edmonton and Calgary.

A 2014 telephone survey in Red Deer asked residents if they would support in general a bylaw to restrict vehicle idling to improve air quality. Council heard that 68.9 per cent were in support while 80 per cent also supported restricting idling around schools and hospitals.

Hackett said the city wants to develop a policy that works for Red Deer for the climate. She told council that cities further north of Red Deer including the Yukon and Edmonton have adopted a bylaw.

The city is waiting for the province’s action plan that includes scientific data to deal with the poor air quality in the Red Deer region. The report is expected sometime this year.

Just Posted

Red Deer Mountie sexual assault trial begins

RCMP officer facing sexual assault with a weapon and breach of trust charges

Power outages expected for Normandeau during electrical upgrade

Customers could experience more than one outage

YMCA to operate Red Deer’s new Northside Community Centre opens July 2

Red Deerians have long been anticipating the opening of the new municipally-owned… Continue reading

Teen reported missing in Red Deer

Red Deer RCMP seek information on teen

Air Canada reviewing how crew left passenger on parked plane

Air Canada said Sunday it’s looking into how crew members could have… Continue reading

WATCH: Hundreds run in the 5K Foam Fest in Red Deer

The annual event took place at Heritage Ranch on Saturday

Cavallini, David scores 3 goals, Canada defeats Cuba 7-0

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Coach John Herdman couldn’t be happier about the state… Continue reading

Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse lands same job with Canada’s men’s team

Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse is the new coach of Canada’s… Continue reading

Steamy romance novelist Judith Krantz dies at 91

LOS ANGELES — Writer Judith Krantz, whose million-selling novels such as “Scruples”… Continue reading

Flying Wallendas safely cross Times Square on high wire

NEW YORK — Two siblings from the famed Flying Wallendas safely crossed… Continue reading

UK: Police visit incident dogs Johnson’s leadership campaign

LONDON — The leading contender to become Britain’s next prime minister is… Continue reading

Trump: ‘Surprise’ question about Pence led him to hesitate

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says he hesitated when asked about endorsing… Continue reading

Indigenous drummers lead pipeline protesters on 22-kilometre march in Victoria

VICTORIA — The government approval of the Trans-Mountain pipeline expansion won’t stop… Continue reading

Retired UBC professor Peter Winterburn killed in Chile, school confirms

VALPARAISO, Chile — A retired geochemistry professor from the University of British… Continue reading

Most Read