$11.50 per year utility rate increase proposed by Lacombe administration

Council passes first reading of bylaw; will discuss at next meeting

Lacombe Council gave first reading to their utility rate bylaw which will see and increase of $1.14 a month, or about $11.50 per year for the average household.

The Water Utility Rate and the Wastewater Utility Rate will see an increase of 0.9 per cent; while the Solid Waste Utility Rate will remain the same.

The 0.9 increases are based on the 2020 tax rate, which was also set at 0.9 per cent.

“I had said that the scenarios developed were based on the presumption that anything that went for the tax rate would similarly go to the utility rate, other than solid waste where we had said that we will freeze it at the same rate,” Mathew Goudy, Lacombe chief administrative office, said.

The solid waste rate remained steady due to the removal of curbside pick-up of recycling.

“We would have liked to see that rate go lower with the reduction in curbside recycling pick-up but with some of the changes we have seen in the industry, the actually cost for pick-up of recycling has gone way up and with the increased use at the Wolf Creek recycling depot — we are picking it up about twice as often,” he said.

The water and wastewater rates are below the rate of inflation in Alberta, but Goudy says they should easily cover their costs.

“Both of those utilities are in healthy positions right now,” he said.

Goudy said the increases are lower than several other comparable municipalities in the province

“When we have looked around at some of our colleagues, the average increase was around 2 per cent, so being around 1 per cent was something council put a high priority on,” he said.

For wastewater, prices remained relatively the same despite the city being involved with a highly praised regional wastewater system.

“It was brought in to meet the new wastewater regulations that were brought in by the federal government. Meeting those standards required an enhancement to our equipment — we chose to do that with a regional service delivery model with Red Deer. There is some increased costs because we are pumping wastewater all the way to Red Deer,” he said.

Goudy said there is some room to move if council requests lower utility rates at second or third reading.

“At 0.9 per cent, it is such a small amount that I am sure there is some modifications that can be made but already being lower than the rate of inflation in Alberta is something council is pleased to be able to deliver,” he said.

Lacombe Mayor Grant Creasey said there was no surprises to these rates.

“We have tried to keep our increases to an acceptable level and I think we have done that,” he said.

Creasey doesn’t foresee huge changes to the rates.

“We are getting down to splitting hairs when we are talking about a fraction of one per cent. Is it an increase, sure, but I believe it is an acceptable one,” he said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Lacombe partners with Vesta to support community initiatives

Mayor Creasey yesterday a $20,000 contribution from Vern Crone, production manager for Vesta Energy

Cody Dennis Memorial Game returns to Blackfalds for 16th year

Memorial game raises funds for Blackfalds Minor Hockey

Lacombe’s Cow Patti Theatre, LPAC team up for youth production of ‘Much More Munsch’

Youth ages 8-17 have been rehearsing original play since November

PHOTOS: Lacombe’s Nowco Home Hardware donates to Safe Harbour Society

Two large loads of warm clothing, mitts and McDonald’s gift cards donated

Lacombe County, Summer Village of Gull Lake sign Intermunicipal Collaboration Framework

Agreement specifies what and how services are funded and delivered

VIDEO: Trudeau insists Iran respect families’ wishes when it comes to burials

All 176 people on board the Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752 were killed

Canadian public health agencies ramping up preparations in response to new virus

Health officials have said there are no confirmed cases of the emerging coronavirus in Canada

‘Naughty boy’: Monty Python star Terry Jones dies at 77

The comedian has been suffering from a rare form of dementia

Alberta premier wants federal government to do more about opioid imports

Jason Kenney says Canada should find ways to cut down on drugs being smuggled into the country

Alberta Energy Regulator laying off staff, restructures, deals with budget cuts

Gordon Lambert, interim CEO, says the changes are part of a restructuring

Energy companies owe more than double the tax to Alberta municipalities

Survey says communities are owed $173 million — up 114% since last spring

No gondola from Banff to Mount Norquay, feds say

Parks Canada dismisses proposal for gondola, Grizzly Pavilion and boardwalks

U.S. officials confirm first case of Wuhan coronavirus near Seattle

The U.S. is the fifth country to report seeing the illness

Most Read