Medicine Hat Minute: SCAN Unit, Charging Stations, and Budget Adjustment Coming
Medicine Hat Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Medicine Hat politics
This Week In Medicine Hat:
There will be a meeting of City Council this afternoon at 3:45 pm. The meeting will begin with a closed session to discuss a human resources update and Council policy development, before opening up to the public at 6:30 pm. During the public session, Council will hear a 2024 budget update and discuss adjustments to the capital and operating budgets. Proposed adjustments on the table would improve the City’s Municipal Budget Gap by $0.8 million. Watch your inbox for a full breakdown of Medicine Hat’s financial situation coming soon!
- The Administrative and Legislative Review Committee will meet on Tuesday at 4:30 pm. Most of the meeting will be held in-camera (in secret) to review applications to the City’s Advisory Boards and Commissions.
- On Thursday, there will be a meeting of the Corporate Services Committee at 4:30 pm. No agenda is available for this meeting yet.
Last Week In Medicine Hat:
The City installed two new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at Towne Square, supplementing the existing two. The City said it aims to support the transition to low-emission vehicles and enhance accessibility for residents and tourists who have adopted electric vehicles. The project, funded by the SouthGrow Regional Initiative in collaboration with the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre and Natural Resources Canada, received a grant covering $20,000, with Medicine Hat contributing over $27,000 for upfront capital costs. These charging stations mark the initial phase of the City's plan to expand its public EV charging network, with users paying $2 per hour through the Hypercharge app.
- The City officially presented HALO Air Ambulance with a cheque for $1 million, marking the City’s inaugural contribution to the service in its 16-year history at the Medicine Hat Regional Airport. The funding, approved by Council in July, is technically split in half - $500,000 for 2023 and an equivalent amount reserved for 2024, ensuring two years of financial backing. This move aligns Medicine Hat with other supportive municipalities, including Bow Island, Cypress County, and the Counties of Newell and Forty Mile. HALO receives 29% of its budget from Alberta Health Services, and relies on local businesses and municipalities for financial support.
- The Province announced a new Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) unit that will service Medicine Hat. The SCAN unit will be based in Lethbridge, but will cover the region from Vulcan County to the Saskatchewan boundary. For the last four years, a unit has been based in Calgary, although a significant number of cases in southern Alberta, and increasing calls for service from Medicine Hat, necessitated a more local office. SCAN specializes in investigating suspected drug houses and can seek temporary closure orders through court intervention to curb criminal activities. Medicine Hat’s Police Chief called the expansion a “welcome addition”.
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