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Council Roundup, September 27, 2011

September 28, 2011

Snow clearing and parking

Council passed changes to the policy that governs how the City clears snow from the roads, which include:

  • In the event that a significant snowfall is occurring or is expected, a parking ban on bus routes will be implemented. Motorists will be given at least eight hours notice of the ban. Vehicles that are not moved can be ticketed and towed. Alleys next to bus routes will be the highest priority alleys to be plowed to allow easier access.
  • 48 hours after a snowfall the clearing of all residential streets down to a five cm snowpack will begin and be completed within five days. If a five cm snowpack cannot be maintained then plowing to bare pavement will occur where required.
  • Windrows will remain in residential neighbourhoods, but continue to be removed from main roads.

Arena discussions continue

Council heard an update on a proposed deal to build a new downtown arena.

A non-compete clause between Northlands and the Katz Group and whether the province will provide $100 million in funding remain as two outstanding issues.

There are land and business requirements on both sides that require resolution prior to October 31.

City Administration will be bringing an update to Council prior to October 31. Although the details of land negotiations must remain private until a deal is finalized, Council and Administration are committed to making all aspects of any agreement public, should an agreement be reached.

Outdoor Smoking

Council voted overwhelmingly to ban smoking in and near playgrounds, spray parks, skate parks, outdoor fields, basketball and tennis courts, and skating rinks. A bylaw will now be prepared.

Massage bylaw

Council approved changing the way the City regulates massage parlours. As of January 1, 2012, massage therapists who are registered with the Health Practitioners of Canada or the Massage Therapist Association of Alberta will be regulated as health enhancement centres. Other massage parlours will be licensed as body rub centres and be required to pay higher business licensing fees and provide sexual exploitation courses for their employees.  A bylaw will now be prepared.

Support for a business accelerator program

Council agreed to provide $120,000 to Startup Edmonton for the Flightpath Accelerator program. This program helps companies quickly turn business ideas into reality. Startup Edmonton will also train entrepreneurs, who will in turn create more investable companies, with the goal to increase the number of business deals in the Edmonton area.