Medicine Hat Minute: Utility Bills, Library Visitors, and Community Support Funding
Medicine Hat Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Medicine Hat politics
This Week In Medicine Hat:
The Public Services Committee will meet this morning at 8:00 am. On the agenda is a discussion about downtown public washrooms, as well as potential updates to the Trap, Neuter, and Return program aimed at dealing with the feral cat population. There will also be a Managing Director’s Service Area Update which will include the Jehovah’s Witness Convention and microgrant applications.
- Also on Monday, there will be a Special Meeting of City Council at 7:15 pm. The entire meeting will be held in-camera (in secret). On the agenda are discussions about the future of Medicine Hat Curling Club, Provincial appointments to the Medicine Hat Police Commission, and Council’s Strategic Priorities.
- The Economic, Land & Strategic Planning & Development Committee will meet on Tuesday at 4:30 pm. The Committee will discuss the 2021-2023 Development Incentive Program Progress Report before closing the meeting to the public and hearing a Managing Director's Service Area Update in-camera.
Last Week In Medicine Hat:
The 2022 Annual Report from the Medicine Hat Public Library showed a significant increase in visitors. In 2022, the Library provided more than 6,600 free library cards through its free library card initiative. The number of items borrowed from the Library is up 383%, with visits up 76.5%. Of course, these numbers are based on comparison with 2021 when there were COVID-19 restrictions in place. Comparisons to 2019 were not provided.
- Council passed a motion asking Administration to explore options for one-off rebates or other solutions to lower the cost of utility bills, but residents are still concerned about the rising costs of their utilities. The City is forecasting energy profits of more than $162.1 million for 2022. This would be $88.7 million over what was in the budget. Councillor Darren Hirsch also wants to provide residents with more clarity on how utility rates are arrived at, and why the City’s profits don’t necessarily equate to lower bills.
- A total of $670,000 was provided to community support organizations through the Family and Community Support Services Contract Funding grants. Council approved the funding over a two-year period until 2024-2025. Remember, Common Sense Medicine Hat doesn't accept (or apply for) government funding - and we never will - because we think you should be free to choose, for yourself, which organizations to support. But, if you DO agree with us, we would be grateful for any financial support. Every dollar is used to fund our research and advocacy efforts, including bringing you all of this great information every Monday about what City Council is really up to!
Common Sense Medicine Hat doesn't accept any government funding and never will. We think you should be free to choose, for yourself, which organizations to support. If you're in a position to contribute financially, you can make a donation here.
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