Council approved an update to the Town of Ponoka’s snow removal policy aimed at increasing service levels within the community.
The decision was made Tuesday, Nov. 24 during council’s regular meeting after Dave McPhee, director of operations and property services briefed councillors. Rather than keep several large town zones, McPhee said he created six, smaller zones with an updated service level guideline to meet delay concerns.
With help from new equipment and staff, crews have been able to tackle areas quicker. Part of the demand was seen in recent budget survey results, which showed strong support for snow removal. The increased service levels will also see an increase in operations costs, said McPhee.
He estimates this updated policy will add $50,000 to $80,000 annually to operations.
The top five priorities are the main arteries through town, major streets, the airport runway, the downtown core and the commercial industrial zone. Depending the road conditions and weather forecast, snow clearing will begin when there is an accumulation of 10 cms.
Snow clearing residential streets will rotate from Lucas Heights, the north end of town, the central district and Riverside.
For ice control, crews use a road salt mixed with a sanding material at a variety of rates depending on the temperature conditions. Priorities start at primary roads, intersections, railways crossings, bridges, abutting highways then to collector roads and hills.
The next priority is for secondary roads and their intersections. Crews will then focus on parking lots, lanes and sidewalks.
Waste management open house set
Council requested an open house detailing the new waste management and recycle program be provided. The date is set for Monday, Dec. 7 at 6:30 at the Kinsmen Community Centre. Residents eager to hear more about the program can attend the open house to have their questions answered.
Carts are being delivered this month.
Amanda Henderson-Kada, executive director of the Ponoka Rising Sun Clubhouse said she would attend the open house to answer questions residents have on their program.
Henderson-Kada needs confirmation from existing or new customers by Dec. 14 that they will utilize the clubhouse’s services.
Utilities and environmental committee
Town council approved third reading to establish a Utilities and Environmental Committee to find ways to increase revenue from the town’s utilities.
The make up of the committee will include two councillors, four members of the public and one member of the Economic Development Board. Each member will have a vote on the committee.
Staff gift and holiday hours
Council approved that town staff will receive $50 gift certificates from either IGA or No Frills, or split with both, as a holiday gift. The total value of the gifts is $4,250 plus a safe ride home, estimated at $100 for the staff party at the Curling Rink Dec. 4.
Council also approved the holiday hours for the town office: closed at noon Dec. 24, closed Dec. 25 and 28. Dec. 29 to 30 regular business hours. Closed at noon Dec. 31 and Jan. 1.
Parkland Community Planning Services approved an application to adjust a property line to accommodate an existing fence.
The lot is categorized under the low density narrow lot residential off of 39 Street north of Highway 53.