Council refuses to lobby feds on Canada Post changes

Town councillors declined a request to send a letter to the federal government to reverse changes in Canada Post’s operations.

Town councillors declined a request to send a letter to the federal government to reverse changes in Canada Post’s operations.

The request came from the Canadian Union of Provincial Workers (CUPW) to councillors during their regular meeting Tuesday, Oct. 14. It states recent changes have increased postage fees to users and proposed changes include eliminating door-to-door delivery in cities and closing or downsizing post offices. Only Councillors Teri Underhill and Tim Falkiner were in favour of the request to write the letter.

Coun. Carla Prediger felt council’s job is not to advocate for an enterprise such as Canada Post. “I do not support this decision whatsoever,” Prediger said.

Coun. Loanna Gulka did not feel the Town of Ponoka will face these issues as there are three places residents can get their post in town. One is the main post office and the other two are satellite locations at Rexall and Shoppers Drug Mart, the latter deals with rural package pick up and both offer postal services.

Mayor Bonnett says he can’t remember the last time there was home delivery in Ponoka and feels this is an issue outside of the town’s scope and Canada Post must deal with it. “They’re their own corporation. They run themselves.”

Falkiner disagreed. “This isn’t a big deal, writing a letter to the minister asking for support.”

A second request from the union was to write to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to lobby the federal government to consult with the public about what kind of postal service they need before allowing Canada Post to make changes. Bonnett asked to amend the request to be sent to Canada Post rather than the federal government.

Council voted in favour of the amended request six to one with Gulka voting against it.

Home delivery was terminated Oct. 20.

Signing and credit card authorization

With Rachel Kunz as the new CAO for the Town of Ponoka, councillors approved a town credit card for her use.

There were previously two credit cards with a limit of $30,000 to cover costs of items that require a credit card purchase and for events such as councillors and administration being sent to conferences. The other two holders of the town-authorized cards are the mayor and the director of corporate services.

Councillors also approved Kunz and Sandra Lund, accounting officer for the Town of Ponoka, to be added as bank signing authorities for the town. With Betty Quinlan, Director of Corporate Services, they make up three signing authorities for the town of Ponoka.