The town council of Outlook met for a regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday night, August 25. Present were councillors Justin Turton, Bob Stephenson, Sharon Bruce, Kevin Grotheim, and Ryan Husband, as well as Mayor Maureen Weiterman and Administrator Kevin Trew. Absent was Councillor Kyle McLeod.
The meeting was broadcast live on Facebook.
A number of items and topics were discussed, including the following highlights.
Bylaw 08 Joint Health Committee - Motion was carried for a third and final reading.
Bylaw 02 Tax Certificate - Motion was carried for a third and final reading.
Bylaw 10 Joint Fire and Rescue Services - No concrete decisions were made on this bylaw for now. The RM of Rudy has indicated that they wish to partner with the Town on these services, so further discussion between the two parties is needed.
Bylaw 11 Business Licensing - Most businesses don't seem to like the licensing model, according to Administrator Trew. After some lengthy discussion, a first reading was held. Afterward, Council instructed Trew to go back and "massage" it to bring back for further discussion.
Delegation - Jason Forest, Associated Engineering, Railyard Subdivision Update
Appearing via video was Jason Forest of Associated Engineering to provide an update on the railyard subdivision in Outlook.
Discussed were the merits of going to tender in order to prepare the 13 lots in Phase 1A of the Railway Subdivision for development this coming fall. Forest proposed that the project would go to tender on August 31, with a two-week tender advertising period closing on September 16. He feels that with those timelines, construction could be completed by October 31, 2021 with the exception of the paving of Railway Avenue, which would be advertised in the tender to secure worst-case pricing for 2022.
Council would then take a look at paving Railway along with other planned 2022 paving projects at budget time, and then plan through the winter of 2021-22. As well, the cost of development would be clear at that time, and therefore pricing for the lots developed in Phase 1A will be set and lots will be available for purchase in the winter and spring of 2021-2022.
A final part of the discussion was regarding local subcontractors and contractors. The tender will be set up so that some regard will be taken into consideration of a local contractor component rather than solely basing the decision on the lowest price available.
Following Jason's presentation, Mayor Weiterman apologized for audio issues that prevented the live audience from hearing anything from Jason's point of view.
Council passed a resolution brought forward by Councillor Grotheim to proceed with tendering with construction deadline of October 31, 2021, weighting the decision components on 80% price and 20% including local contractors. Councillor Husband declared a conflict of interest and excused himself from the decision.
Communications Requiring Action or Decision
Sask Public Safety - New Dispatch Fee and Agreement: A motion was made and carried to accept the new fees and agreement associated with it.
Reports of Administration
Street Sweeper - Council is going to sit on the decision over whether or not to purchase a new street sweeper.
Line of Credit Bank of Montreal - Trew said Outlook was going to need this line of credit for the foreseeable future. He is going to explore options and interest rates.
Strategic Plan Session 3 - Town would like to form a strategic plan. Some visioning and data collection has been done, and a mission statement with core values is set to be created and brought forward. This will be provided to the public for their input and engagement. Councillor Turton and Trew read aloud the core values.
Council Recognition Policy - Recommendation was that Council accept the policy. A motion was made and carried to accept the policy.
Outlook Museum Thanksgiving Event - Looking for Council's support by way of closing off a portion of Railway Avenue and the 100-block north end of Franklin Street for an event that will be held Thanksgiving weekend. The thought process is that the event will bring people to town and encourage good business. Motion made and carried.
Chief Administrator Report
The following are highlights of the Chief Administrator Report, as prepared by Kevin Trew:
- The pool staff that were considered close contacts to a positive COVID case or chose layoff due to pool closure and were subsequently laid off returned to work on July 30.
- Assistant Administrator Rachel Sillers is using all earned vacation and time-in-lieu credits before beginning her maternity and parental leaves this fall; we wish her well.
- We discovered an error in applying the supplement made in an effort to equalize benefits where it was only intended to go to full-time permanent staff and it has been given to part-time permanent staff as well; upon finding this error Council was notified and agreed to go forward without clawing back overpayments; affected staff have been notified and payroll has been adjusted.
Policy and Procedural Items:
- Strategic Planning – We have been working on strategic planning for most of August, so far we have involved Council and the Executive Team, after this meeting of Council we expect to engage the public for feedback via Survey monkey and paper surveys to be distributed in the community; there will be a quick turnaround on this survey; we will have a draft mission statement, along with key value statements in this go around. We expect to engage the public twice during this process and for it to be complete with goals and action plans by the 2nd Council meeting in October.
- Effective governance – Council has been reviewing a number of bylaws as of late including the zoning bylaw, medical clinic committee, tax certificate, business licensing and joint protective services committee.
- Competent Team – Administration is working on Employee policies that will not only support staff in decision making but enable professional development opportunities for personal and professional growth and we expect introduction of these in the coming months.
- Tridaron Construction was the successful bidder for moving dirt to the subdivision and to the landfill, we engaged two local contractors to prepare the ground and stockpile clay at both locations, community planning has indicated that approval of the railway subdivision is imminent, we have been working with Associated Engineering who will put the servicing and earth moving for phase 1a out for tender immediately upon approval. The cost of subdivision to Community Planning is paid in full and Council set aside the cash-in-lieu of Municipal Reserve set aside at the August 11 meeting of Council.
- We are looking for more members at large for the Recreation Committee, while currently the committee is geared mostly toward recreation, we are morphing it toward Community Development including tourism and economic development as well as recreation – we are hoping to find a diverse group of community champions to join this committee.
- The Joint Protective Services Steering Committee (Town of Outlook/ RM of Rudy) has been working toward a new agreement for 2022 wherein the Town and RM jointly own the Fire and Rescue Services.
- The Clinic Committee met July 26 and the bylaw formalizing the partnership between the RM of Rudy, the Town of Outlook and the RM of Fertile Valley will be posed for 3rd and final reading at the August 25 meeting of Town Council.
- The Mobile Home leases have now been signed with the exception of one where we are told of a pending sale.
- Council hosted a very successful staff appreciation barbecue on August 18 where long service awards were presented to staff members Luke Lockhart (20 years) and Dylan Herron (5 years) and fire department members George King (30 years), Sean Ferguson (20 years) and Dalas King (20 years).
- We settled on an annual fee for maintenance of Highway 15 within Town limits which includes the delivery of cold mix and cash to support street sweeping, snow removal and minor asphalt repairs while a rehabilitation project is in the distant future.
- The landfill building, scale integration and reconfiguration project is complete with only very minor touch ups required, our staff is very proud of the work done, the entrance has moved to the south and now that we are using the scale, we anticipate the ability to implement a new bylaw including charging by weight rather than by volume effective January 1, 2022.
Learning Opportunities/Capacity Development:
- The Civic Center renovation has slowed down while we look at a few enhancements that may be affordable now with the grants and reserve funds dedicated to improving that facility.
- The former CAO is in breach of contract with the Town of Outlook having not returned the moving allowance given to her on the condition that she be employed with the Town of Outlook for 6 months, we have pursued financial compensation from her, however she has now reached out and stated she has no intention to pay this back; the Town has filed a code of ethics violation complaint with the Urban Municipal Administrators Association of Saskatchewan (UMAAS) and we have been informed that the ethics committee has not met yet, there is no progress to report at this time.
- Cottages – renovations are beginning on 801b with Loren accessing quotes and along with coming up with a plan for changes, in addition, we are putting a new furnace along with air conditioning in 802b as the furnace is in need of replacement.
- Office Space – Mayor Weiterman plans to keep office hours every Monday (time to be determined) at the available space for walk in traffic to Meet with the Mayor Mondays starting August 30, this is in office 5 to the left just past the lawyer’s office in the Town Hall Complex.
Current Unfinished Projects:
- The Storm Water Outfalls project at Pancake/Skytrail should go to tender very soon, we are awaiting Associated Engineering final tender documents.
- Landfill Decommissioning of Old Cell – Plans are under way to award the engineering for this project very soon, we plan to complete this project early in 2022.
- Raw Water Intake/ Water Treatment Plant Upgrade Project – We are proud that the ICIP funding has now been confirmed for approximately $5.9 million in grant funds from the provincial and federal governments approved, this, along with Town of Outlook funds makes this project estimated at $7.8 million, there will be work to be done prior to going to tender including a study to see the best alternatives for water supply.
- Mann Street Residential – Urban Systems had to update their concept plan as there were 2 errors on it;
- Highway Commercial – Drainage plan is part of the Mann Street Residential and the concept plan – this is priority 2 for subdivisions,
- Landfill Services Agreement (no recent ones located 2006 is the most recent one on file) – Since we are working through a new landfill bylaw in 2021 it is a good idea that we have solid agreements with user municipalities going forward; current user municipalities are the RMs of Rudy and Fertile Valley;
- Mutual Aid Agreements – This will be incorporated in Jim Cheyne’s (Emergency Measures Coordinator) work plan.