Summary of Council, October 06, 2014
Green Line Program Work Plan Update
Council discussed a report on the Green Line funding streams and work plan – a plan that will establish the transitway from North Pointe (Country Hills Boulevard/Centre Street) to Seton/South Health Campus. Council referred the report to Administration to return to Council by end of 2014 with options for compressing the project’s timelines and related implications to financing and debt.
September Snow Storm Tree Debris Update
Council received an update from the Tactical Operations Centre on the September snow event that stated approximately 500,000 City-owned trees plus 1.5 million private trees were damaged as a result of the event (an estimated 50% of Calgary’s trees). City crews have cleared about 50% of the debris so far, with the rest to be removed from neighbourhoods by November 9th. The cost of efforts to-date is $7 million and is estimated to be $18 million by the end of this year, which is a net $12 million above the Parks annual budget. The City is working with the province on a Disaster Recovery Program (DRP) to assist in funding the City’s response. Restoration work will continue into 2015 thru 2017 and beyond to fully rehabilitate Calgary’s urban forest.
Parks Zero Based Review
Council approved the Parks Zero-Based Review (ZBR) which is expected to result in $4 million in annual financial benefits through a mix of productivity gains, cost savings and increased revenue generation. The review focused on Parks operations and organizational efficiency across the business unit as well as the management of natural areas and pathways.
Ward Boundary Commission Report
A report was provided by The Ward Boundary Commission, an independent group appointed by Council to determine the appropriate number of Councillors on Calgary City Council. The Commission recommended that the number of Councillors not be increased at this time and instead provided a number of alternative recommendations for managing increasing demands of Councillors. The recommendations included exploring the concept of local Ward Offices staffed by Administration to serve as the face of City Hall on local issues and some City services. Council directed the Commission to work with Administration on developing budget estimates on the recommendations for a discussion at the November 14th Special Meeting of Council.