This Week At City Hall: Road Work, Lead Testing, Recreation Facilities Plan

The latest issue went to press yesterday — it’s our Best of Food Spectacular! Look for it on newstands Friday — and while I didn’t have a huge amount to write in terms of total word count, there were lots of little fiddly bits that took up a goodly portion of my meager brain power and, well, the end result is I forgot to do this week’s city hall preview until today… when most of the stuff on city hall’s agenda has already passed me by. Sorry about that.

Get the skinny on what’s happened and what’s about to happen downtown after the jump.

Monday, April 19
MUNICIPAL HERITAGE ADVISORY COMMITTEE (12:15 pm): Administration gave a presentation on Historic Places Regina.

Tuesday, April 20
PUBLIC WORKS COMMITTEE (4 pm): Looked into traffic concerns on Woodhams Drive (staff says there are none) and at the 2010 Local Improvements Program (which is the road work schedule for this spring and summer). A petition came in asking that the city skip doing work on the walks, curbs and gutters along Grant Road. As the petition was valid and had names on it from over 50 per cent of the residents on the street, the work won’t be going forward. Why’d the Grant Roaders decide to leave their walks in disrepair? Oh, because the costs of the project would have been cost shared between the city and those residents. Okay, so great, more of the city goes to rot and ruin because people don’t want their taxes going up. Of course, why are the residents of one strip expected to be on the hook for a sidewalk anyone from anywhere in the city could possibly use? Why aren’t all our taxes going up a smidge instead of the Grant Road folk having their taxes go up by a bigger smidge? Good questions. Someone around here should hire a “reporter” to look into that.

The committee also looked at the traffic light installation program for the year and the results of a lead testing program. As for the lead, the L-P had a good article on this. Seems there are lead levels above the recommended limit in the drinking water in some older neighbourhoods. But, it’s likely coming from lead plumbing within the houses or from the lines that go into the house — the city’s mains are not lead. It also seems that you can avoid the higher lead levels by letting your water run a bit before using it — the lead gets in the water from sitting in the lines. Anyway, the committee isn’t worried enough about the lead contamination as they won’t be taking action on it beyond informing residents in the affected neighbourhoods.

Wednesday, April 21
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE(11:45 am): Considering the establishment of three pesticide-free parks — Queen Elizabeth II Court (outside city hall), Gordon Park and Al Pickard Park. Also, looking at transferring $4.5 million from the General Reserve Fund to some specific reserve funds. Looks like most of the money ($3.4 million) will be going to pad the Transit Department’s coffers. That money will be used to support new fleet purchases so this should be welcome news to those looking forward to improvements to the transit system.

Finally, the committee will also look at the annual report on the Mayor’s Task Force on Access.

COMMUNITY AND PROTECTIVE SERVICES COMMITTEE (4 pm): Looking at the 2010 cemetery fee schedule, increases to user fees for ice time on city-run arenas, extensions to vending machine operating agreements, and a report on the costs of enforcing the city’s open air fire bylaws. Yeah, apparently, while we’ve been allowing people to have fires in their yards for years now, there hasn’t been much money allotted enforcing the rules regulating them.

The big item on the agenda this week is the Recreation Facilities Plan. This can be downloaded from the city’s website. And you know what…. I haven’t read this yet. So how about we all download it and read it together over the rest of the week? What do you say? Sound like fun? And if anyone has thoughts on the plan, post them in the comments below. I’d love to read what people think.

Complete reports and agendas can be found on the city’s website.

Author: Paul Dechene

Paul Dechene is 5’10” tall and he was born in a place. He’s not there now. He’s sitting in front of his computer writing his bio for this blog. He has a song stuck in his head. It’s “Girl From Ipanema”, thanks for asking.

You can follow Paul on Twitter at @pauldechene and get live updates during city council meetings and other city events at @PDcityhall.