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Weyburn council approves new Humane Society animal shelter

Weyburn city council approved a development permit for the Weyburn Humane Society to build a new animal shelter at 1810 East Avenue.
City Hall 8981
Weyburn city council approved a development permit to allow the Weyburn Humane Society to proceed with a new animal shelter.

WEYBURN – Weyburn city council approved a development permit for the Weyburn Humane Society to build a new animal shelter at 1810 East Avenue, with a number of conditions.

As the permit is for a discretionary use on the city-owned property, council approval was required for the project to proceed. The approval depended in part on the reaction of the neighbouring properties to the proposal, with one property owner noting a concern about the potential noise of barking dogs.

The animal shelter is currently on city-owned land next to the Fire Hall and public works building on 16th Street, and are proposing to move to a lot kitty-corner to the Southeast Cornerstone School Division office, and across the street from the Legacy building owned by Mertz Holdings, where a number of provincial government employees have their offices.

The new building will be about 5,400 square feet and will have outdoor play areas and kennels for dogs.

“I know you’ll take seriously the concerns about noise levels,” said Coun. Jeff Richards to representatives of the Humane Society who were present for the council meeting. “These are very exciting times, so thank you very much for doing this.”

Asked what measures the Humane Society is considering to deal with the potential noise level of barking dogs, president Randy Bakaluk indicated they are planning to move the kennels from where they were located on the plans submitted to the city, and will have them facing into the building. In addition there will be fencing and trees on a landscaped lot, and he noted there is a lot between the proposed shelter and the office building in question.

Mayor Marcel Roy was particularly concerned that the list of conditions for the permit approval needs to include a line about noise abatement, and commented that the city’s noise bylaw was not adequate for situations like this.

In further discussion, the mayor said he would not support the permit approval unless a plan was in place for noise abatement.

Coun. Ryan Janke pointed out if there’s a problem with the noise bylaw, “that’s on us,” and urged the mayor not to put that issue on the Humane Society.

Bakaluk pointed out that currently dogs bark when people go by to the public works building or the fire hall, and the new location will likely have much less traffic and less reason for dogs to be barking.

He also wanted the council and public to know that, contrary to comments some people have been making, the building they are bringing in is not from the United States, but is from Manitoba, from a company that employs Saskatchewan workers.

In the end, council unanimously approved the development permit for the new animal shelter.

• In other council business, the city has approved a timeline for the budget process this fall, with the preliminary budget set to be presented at the Oct. 23 council meeting.

An open house consultation process will then be held on Nov. 6-10 at a location yet to be determined, and the public input will be further discussed by council at the Nov. 27 meeting. The final budget will be presented for council approval on Dec. 11.

The open house will be held for the public to come in and find out what is proposed for the city budget in 2024, and there will be further opportunity for the public to have input at the Nov. 27 council meeting, where delegations will be allowed to speak to council on any concerns they have with the proposed budget.

• Council approved a discretionary use development permit to Big Jim’s Brew Shop, as owner Todd Bedore is proposing to set up a season outdoor patio in front of the shop on the street.

The patio will measure eight feet by 24 feet, with a 42-inch railing on three sides, and a concrete barrier. Bedore proposes to have the patio in place from May 1 to Sept. 30 each year, with the purpose to serve non-alcoholic beverages.

The approval was made with a long list of conditions attached. Bedore noted it took about three months to work through all of the plans and conditions.

Coun. John Corrigan noted many other cities have street patios, often restaurants and bars, and wondered if other businesses will be applying to do this as well.

Bedore said he’s acting as a sort of guinea pig as other businesses on Third Street are looking to possibly do something similar in the future if this works, and they are working together to try to generate more business for the downtown area.