In her mandate letter sent on Friday, Alberta’s Prime Minister is calling for municipalities to speed up approval of projects to build residential and commercial areas on their territory.
Danielle blacksmith asks the minister for local affairs, Ric McIverto work with his cabinet colleagues
develop suitable incentives and criteria to significantly reduce municipal approval times for this type of project.
Rick McIver, himself a former Calgary City Councilman, believes municipalities could do more to expedite the processing of applications.
Sometimes you can hear builders and developers around the world saying that the process isn’t as quick as it should behe said.
He wants Alberta to have a reputation for being an easy place to do business, because time is money, he says.
In his opinion, when land is designated for a specific use, municipalities should be able to carry out environmental impact studies and transport studies before a developer catches up with them.
Cathy Heron, president of the Association of Municipalities of Alberta and mayor of St. Albert (northwest of Edmonton), says municipalities pride themselves on how few barriers they impose compared to other levels of government.
In her opinion, if anything hinders the development of needed projects, such as affordable housing, it is the lack of state funding.
Sarah Hoffman, Alberta’s New Democratic Party (NDP) local affairs critic, accused the United Conservative Party (UCP) of hiding its record, which she says includes a failure to provide local governments with compensation for unpaid property taxes .
Alberta’s municipalities need a real partner within their provincial government and nothing in this letter suggests that this is a provincial priority ECP for the next four yearsShe wrote.
Further revisions to local laws follow
Alberta Premier Danielle Smith has long considered allowing municipalities to withhold part of the property taxes they collect for the province and to fund education.
His letter of engagement asks Ric McIver to examine the feasibility of such a measure.
This year’s budget calls for municipalities to collect $2.5 billion in property taxes on education, which will cover about 28% of the costs of running the K-12 school system and the Department of Education. “Education.
Cathy Heron would like to know more about this as she is considering provincial funding for community infrastructure. According to her, there is a $30 billion backlog in municipal infrastructure across the province.
A new infrastructure model is set to be announced next year budget of local government will tie increases or decreases in these funds to provincial revenue.
The prime minister also instructed the minister for local affairs to make changes to the local elections law. Danielle blacksmith has previously said she would like to see a party system in local politics. This worries Cathy Heron, who says she has seen voters reject lists in previous elections.
They want their councilors to have their own values and principles when they enter the boardroom, she said. This would disappear with the introduction of parties.
Ric McIver considers that the issue does not concern its mandate.
On the other hand, he would like to consider the possibility of having the original electronic ballot papers consulted when the ballots are counted and of having more information published by the polling stations when the official results are published.
With information from Janet French
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