Utility rates set to go up in Central Alberta

Central Albertans will have to dig deeper into their pockets to pay for utilities starting on March 1. Red Deer city council voted 7-1 to approve the Utility Bylaw that sets the 2015 rates for residents and South Red Deer Regional Wastewater Commission customers.

Central Albertans will have to dig deeper into their pockets to pay for utilities starting on March 1.

Red Deer city council voted 7-1 to approve the Utility Bylaw that sets the 2015 rates for residents and South Red Deer Regional Wastewater Commission customers.

City residents will see on average a 1.7 per cent increase or $1.65 more on the monthly bill for garbage, wastewater, recycling and yard waste services.

But it will be the residents in Innisfail, Bowden, Olds, Mountain View and Red Deer County that will feel the bigger pinch.

The six communities are on a sewer line that connects to Red Deer. A utilities rate review revealed that the six municipalities have been undercharged for costs associated with the treatment plant for several years.

Residents will now pay 80 cents per cubic metre for treatment as part of a phasing in plan that will tack on about 10 cents the following year. The new rates will be phased in over three to five years.

Coun. Paul Harris voted against the bylaw because he thought it was not fair to Red Deer residents.

Harris said the region hasn’t been paying its share for the last few years as it was shown in the review.

“Now we need to charge them what we should be charging them starting tomorrow not trying to phase it in over the next four to five years,” said Harris. “It’s just that simple.”

Mayor Tara Veer said the transition plan will protect against rate shock. She said council landed on a plan that is both fair and defensible before the commission.

Communities have hired consultants to review the city’s rate models to better understand where the numbers are coming from.

The rates for all users will come into effect on March 1.

Coun. Buck Buchanan was absent for personal reasons.

In other council news:

lRed Deer’s waste management facility will continue to handle waste from the Town of Blackfalds.

Council authorized city manager Craig Curtis will enter into an agreement with the town for a period of up to four years.

The city began collecting the waste in 2011 as a temporary measure while the planned Plasco facility was expected to be constructed.

Since that time the Central Waste Management Commission ended its affiliation with Plasco.

Council heard accepting the waste has had little operational impact on the city.

— The city’s pre-eminent project to convert the former civic yards into a thriving mixed-use district is moving along.

Council gave first reading of a borrowing bylaw for $24.5 million for the Riverlands Project. The money will be used for on-site development, service grade and remediation. The site consists of 25 acres of city-owned land.

— Council gave first reading to an Electricity Utility Bylaw that will see the average resident who uses 600 kwh/month will pay $2.85 more each month. The increase reflects electric, light and power distribution tariff rates for 2015.

The bylaw will come back to council for second and third reading on Feb.23.

crhyno@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta recorded a single-day record of over 57,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered. (Photo courtesy Alberta Health Services Twitter)
Alberta hits daily record of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered

Central zone has administered 111,735 doses of the COVID-19

Alberta reported an additional 1,980 cases of COVID-19 Friday. (NIAID-RML via AP)
Red Deer adds 37th death from COVID-19, active cases drop

Alberta Health identified an additional 1,980 cases of the virus province-wide

A rodeo south of Bowden drew a huge crowd on May 1 and 2, 2021. (Photo courtesy Mom’s Diner’s Facebook page)
FILE - A firefighter wears a mask as he drives his truck. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward, File
VIDEO: Flames rip through Edmonton-area seniors complex, but no fatalities

ST. ALBERT, Alta. — Fire has destroyed part of a retirement complex… Continue reading

Toronto FC coach Chris Armas talks with his players during a CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal second leg soccer match against Mexico's Cruz Azul at Azteca stadium in Mexico City, Tuesday, May 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Fernando Llano
Toronto FC coach Chris Armas returns to Red Bull Arena to face former team

Toronto FC coach Chris Armas returns to Red Bull Arena to face former team

Gymnastics Canada skipping Olympic qualifier because of COVID-19 concerns

Gymnastics Canada skipping Olympic qualifier because of COVID-19 concerns

Runner Melissa Bishop-Nriagu speaks to the media at the opening news conference at the Canadian Track and Field Championships, in Montreal, Thursday, July 25, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
After pregnancy, injuries and a pandemic, Bishop-Nriagu finally hitting her stride

After pregnancy, injuries and a pandemic, Bishop-Nriagu finally hitting her stride

Lille's Burak Yilmaz, center, reacts with teammates after scoring during their French League One soccer match between Lille and Nice in Villeneuve d'Ascq, northern France, Saturday May 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)
Canada’s Jonathan David scores milestone goal as Lille moves 4 points ahead of PSG

Canada’s Jonathan David scores milestone goal as Lille moves 4 points ahead of PSG

Jean Carlo Salas of Costa Rica vies for the ball with Canada's Ian Bennett (right) during a CONCACAF Futsal Championship in Guatemala City, Guatemala, Wednesday, May 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-CONCACAF-Norvin Mendoza MANDATORY CREDIT
Canada denied a trip to the FIFA Futsal World Cup in penalty shootout loss to Panama

Canada denied a trip to the FIFA Futsal World Cup in penalty shootout loss to Panama

Canadian Stephen Ames one shot back of leaders at Regions Tradition

Canadian Stephen Ames one shot back of leaders at Regions Tradition

Team Canada skip Kerri Einarson leaves the ice after defeating China at the Women's World Curling Championship in Calgary, Alta., Friday, May 7, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Canada’s Einarson beats China 6-4, qualifies for playoffs at world curling playdowns

Canada’s Einarson beats China 6-4, qualifies for playoffs at world curling playdowns

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau walks to a news conference in Ottawa on Tuesday May 4, 2021. A broad coalition of MPs from all five parties wants the federal government to support waiving the global rules that guard vaccine trade secrets. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
As MPs urge support, Trudeau demurs on whether government backs COVID-19 waiver

As MPs urge support, Trudeau demurs on whether government backs COVID-19 waiver

Most Read