St. Paul Council Unveils 2018 Capital and Operational Budgets

At Town Council on Monday evening, Mayor Maureen Miller and Council revealed their proposed Operational and Capital Budgets for the 2018 fiscal year.

“This is a catch-up budget, of sorts,” said Town Chief Administrative Office Kim Heyman. “There are several pieces of infrastructure, projects, and assets that have been lacking attention, and this budget is meant to address those.”

In addition to those goals, CAO Heyman pointed out that the budget was created so that there would be no increase in the millage rate and no additional borrowing or debt due to this budget.

Operational Budget

The Town of St. Paul’s projected revenue for the 2018 fiscal year sits just over 17.5 million dollars, at $17,507,066. The largest individual sources of revenue are expected to be:

Water Supply and Distribution – $1,875,000
Garbage and Sewage services – $1,074,525 combined
A Municipal Assistance Policing Grant – $448,000
The St. Paul Golf Course – $405,520

On the expenses side, the Town’s OPEX is projected at $17,498,919, leaving a total of $8087 in surplus. The greatest individual expenditures in the fiscal year will include:

General Administration, including Town staff salaries – $3,699,559
Public Works Common Services – $2,051,010
Police Protection Services – $1,958,096
Transportation – $1,684,700 (including $150,000 earmarked for snow removal alone)

The town is also setting aside $20,000 to update the upcoming cannabis land use bylaw. Another expense of interest is $300,000 set aside for the potential of rebuilding the driving range at the golf course, which CAO Heyman and Parks and Recreation Director Harvey Smyl have begun to discuss with a private contractor.

Capital Budget

The Town will be drawing funds from the following areas to provide $5,383,216 to offset Capital Budget expenses:

Transfer from Reserve – $897,000
Transfer from Accumulated Surplus – $556,974
Federal Grant Funds – $600,000
Debenture Proceeds – $600,000
ACP Grant Airport Lighting – $155,917
The Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) Capital – $2,244,441
Gas Tax Fund – $328,884

Projects and assets of note that will be addressed in the CAPEX are:

The Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade – $1,200,000
Repairs to the Clancy Arena roof – $430,000
A new loader with a snow bucket – $367,000
Upgraded Airport lighting – $207,889
Renovations to the Wellness Centre to accommodate more office space for new physicians – $80,000
Updates to Council Chambers – $25,000

Other Highlights from April 23, 2018

Driving Range – As stated above, CAO Heyman and Parks and Recreation Director Harvey Smyl met with a contractor about the possibility of rebuilding the driving range at the St. Paul Golf Course. $300,000 has been set aside in the 2018 budget if the project goes ahead this year, but Heyman suggests that the project, if it goes ahead, will not commence until 2019.

Pool Scheduling – The Aquatic Centre is regularly booked by school groups, but schools from outside of St. Paul and St. Paul Education Regional Division often book the most desirable times. Council will enact a policy that allows SPERD schools to have priority booking times. The motion to enact this procedure was carried, on the condition that École du Sommet also be included in the policy.

Position Title Changes – Administration requested that Council move to revise the titles of two Director level
positions within the Town’s current Organizational Chart. The motion was carried, and the title of Director of Corporate Services has been changed to Director of Finance. The Planning and Legislative Services Coordinator has been changed to Director of Planning and Legislative Services. These changes are adjustments in title only and do not constitute any salary or role adjustments.

Treaty 6 and Métis Flags – Council is pursuing the placement of a Treaty 6 flag at the Civic Centre in conjunction with National Indigenous Peoples Day on June 21. Council received a quote of $2274 from Aurora Flags and Banners in Edmonton to purchase a new flagpole. This estimate does not include installation. Council also discussed placing an addition Treaty 6 flag at the Landing Pad, as well as Métis flags in both locations. Council moved to investigate the flag etiquette surrounding the stacking of the two flags. Once proper flag etiquette is determined, further decisions will be made regarding which flags will be placed and where.

Committee of the Whole Meetings – In order to allow more preparation time for Committee of the Whole meetings, which are normally held on the Tuesday following the first Town Council Meeting of each month, Committee of the Whole Meetings will now be held on the Thursday following the first Town Council meeting each month, effective immediately.

The next St. Paul Town Council Meeting will take place on Monday, May 14, 2018.

JD Schmidt

JD is a reporter who works with Lakeland Connect to bring you the most reliable and honest news that he possibly can. He understands the effective combination of accurate reporting and fine journalistic writing.