Busy city council agenda prepped for Monday’s meeting

Tyler
Tyler Clarke
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A busy city council agenda has been prepared for Monday's meeting, sure to result in a fair amount of discussionf or the balance of the week. 

Coun. Tim Scharkowski wants to see greater police presence north of the river where trouble has been brewing to the west of Little Red River Park. 

The potential closure of the Margo Fournier Centre will be the key takeaway at Monday’s city council meeting, with a handful of people scheduled to voice their support for city ownership of the facility.

However, a handful of other important issues are coming up at Monday’s meeting, set to begin at 5 p.m., of which the following are some of the more notable.

 

• Unpaid water bills might be passed on to landlords in the event that a tenant leaves the bill in arrears.

New legislation that came into effect on Jan. 1 gives the municipality the ability to do so, a report by city manager Jim Toye notes.

Toye wrote in his report that between 2007 and 2012 about $450,000 worth of water and sewer bills remained uncollected.

At Monday’s meeting, it’s anticipated that the city’s elected officials write off $464,306.53 in outstanding utility accounts that pre-date 2007.

Now that the city has been given the authority to enforcement payment through landlords, Toye suggested in his report that this amount might be reduced in future years.

“I think it’s terrible legislation,” Coun. Mark Tweidt said, arguing that tenants will stop paying their bills knowing that legislation will back them up and pass the bill on to the landlord.

“If the landlord would put it into the rent we wouldn’t have that issue,” Coun. Miller countered.

 

• Crime prevention measures have been sought for the area around Sixth Avenue Northeast from 13th Street Northeast to 15th Street Northeast.

The area -- off the western edge of Little Red River Park -- “has become a playground for squatters, partiers and also a dumping ground for household debris,” city manager Jim Toye wrote in a report.

“I really agree that something has to be done,” Coun. Tim Scharkowski said at Monday’s executive committee meeting. “I just don’t know if part of what they’re suggesting in the report will be effective or not.”

Within the report is a series of crime prevention through environmental design suggestions by city bylaw.

Barricades and park hours of operation signs have been recommended, however Scharkowski wants to see more police patrols.

“If you’re on top of it and you’re going through it all the time, they’ll end up moving,” he said.

“I don’t think it’s being policed enough that we’re scaring that certain type of person out of there.”

 

• The taxicab bootlegger bylaw amendment is expected to be finalized on Monday, effectively banning taxicabs from using drive through liquor stores.

The bylaw amendment will be up for second and third reading at Monday’s meeting.

 

• Girl Guides have requested a five-month extension to their lease of the Girl Guide Hall at 1203 Sixth Ave. W., bringing them to the end of September.

After this time, they plan on moving out of the building, with administration working with the organization in finding a new location.

In 2012, the city’s elected officials approved a $73,460 tender to re-roof the Girl Guides building -- a project Mayor Greg Dionne later noted went well over budget.

Within this year’s budget is $60,000 toward Girl Guide Hall beam repairs. 

Organizations: Margo Fournier Centre

Geographic location: Sixth Avenue Northeast, Little Red River Park

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