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Mayor's Report - November

Posted on Friday December 06, 2019 at 01:28PM

November Report – Mayor Rod Raymond


At the last town open house, organized by Councilor Foster, it was decided a monthly report to the residents from council
will be provided. At the first of every month, a member of council will write a report. It will be sent to the Target, added
to our web page, put in with the water bills and possibly sent to the Leduc Rep. These articles will highlight the activities
of council, issues that need discussion and items we wish to get resident feedback.

We have hired a new part time bylaw officer, Mitch Newton He is very professional enforcing bylaws which are in place
to ensure public safety, protection of property rights and quality of life.

Our, made in Thorsby, Economic development committee, regularly meet to define options for growth. A few things have
become evident. As a municipality, we are uncompetitive, reducing our ability to attract larger corporations. It has become
abundantly clear we need to do more for our existing business’s. In the new year, I will personally organize a meeting with
town business leaders, to define issues and explore possible avenues for improvement.

On a positive note, Thorsby has a strong core of volunteers, who work every day for the betterment of the community.
These groups include the Seniors, Legion, Minor Sports, Communities in Bloom, Historical Society, Lions, Cadets, PTA, 4H,
Thorsby Ag, Chamber of Commerce, FCSS, Library, Fish and Game. If I forgot to mention a group: I apologize.

The community spirit is evident from the attendance of the September fund raiser, for the new public park on Hankin
Street. Kudos to Carol and the Spirit of Thorsby committee made up of local business people and residents.We are also in
the process of finalizing the second recreation area, behind Madison. This parcel of land will allow the connection to town
of the trail system. It will give the Lion’s campground the required room for expansion and put in place a proper RV dump
station.We will require public consultation for both Taylor Park and the new un-named park, this year. Some consideration
already presented include: a BMX track for the kids, an off-leash dog park and a natural vegetation area. These properties,
although managed/controlled by the town, belong to you, the residents, so public input is welcomed. They both need
proper development to reflect well on both areas of the town: Hankin Street, and Trail/campground area. We need to
keep in mind, what we do with these areas, will be for the long-term benefit of residents.

Our Christmas in the Village event, coming this Friday, shows the awesome character of our community. Organized by the
volunteer members, of the Thorsby Chamber of Commerce. The event is funded entirely by donations from town business
and Leduc County. The event has been very popular for many years. This year, the former Home Hardware building will
host local vendors, crafters, makers and pie bakers, offering assorted gift ideas.

Council has identified, ways Thorsby can grow. The advantage we have is lifestyle and quality of life. It was what attracted
me to move my business and family members here. It came down to the affordability of real estate, K to 12 schools, RCMP
detachment, recreation and proximity to the airport. One of my sons lives on the southside of Edmonton. His lot is so
small, that he can touch his neighbor’s house. His pickup truck does not fit in his garage. There is virtually no room to park
on the street. He paid $100,000, more for a similar size/style house in Edmonton, then compared to here in Thorsby. He
pays more in property taxes, than I do for my double lot and oversize lot/garage, His taxes are going up again this year. If
he gets his street plowed, they windrow the snow/ice onto his sidewalk (he got plowed only once last year) The worst part
is he doesn’t know or talk to his neighbors! My 8-year-old granddaughter walks 10 blocks to school. She plays hockey in
Edmonton and some of her practices are at 6:30 AM on a Saturday morning! Such a contrast in city to small town living.

On a side note, we as council continue to work with staff to find efficiencies in both capital projects and operations. We
have very good town staff, which allow us to explore options for improvement and reducing cost. Hopeful, this will allow
us to continue with zero tax increases, as we have in the past. A zero-tax increase is actually, a tax reduction, due to
inflation. We are facing some increased cost for police funding, to which we will keep everyone informed. We want to
start a voluntary recycling program as well. The existing recycling program is ineffective with most items taken to the
landfill, at greater cost.We hope to hear from residents for ideas to move forward.

Author: Town of Thorsby

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Great update Mayor

Excellent article Mayor! so easy to read! non political jargon is long overdue and is much appreciated. Sadly I haven't made any town meetings due to my work schedule but on a happy note I was fully comfortable knowing you would be doing what's right and best for us so I wasn't at all suspicious or concerned with new ideas and prospects that you present to us. I am very happy with what I read here and I am impressed to read thoughts have been given on recycling and a dog park. I don't have ideas or thoughts to add on the majority of what I read here as that would entail careful thought but I do have thoughts on issue of a dog park, no thought necessary as I have had one in mind for years...I have as you know two large dogs that I am very responsible and careful with not to allow engagement with other dogs when I run them on my bike or take them out on foot neither do I allow them to run in the outskirts of town in fields anymore as one of them will chase absolutely anything if it moves...for this reason I can only now hope to properly exercise them in a secured space with no other dogs inside. If a dog park does evolve it would be a great advantage for me and maybe others if a notification sign could be available at the gate...a sign stating "in use" or "in use with large dogs that don't listen because their crazy and naughty" so others like me could avoid entering and avoid trouble with other dogs. I have enough trouble riding my bike with loose large dogs charging me and small dogs running up antagonizing me while biking my dogs not to mention the odd loose dog that gets mine going from the other side of the fence in the alley. a dog park would make us all safer if it could be structured in such a way...dogs are dogs and fights will break out so taking all precautions is best not to mention not all dogs have been vaccinated. Thank you Mayor for being a good person and not seeking fame but rather whats best for us...oh off topic...I didn't realize until a few weeks ago when I read in the target that shoveling snow on the street from the sidewalk was not allowed, this morning when I finished shoveling snow for a customer down town I passed your business and decided to shovel your sidewalk also because I appreciate you all and I like Sandi...most of the snow I shoveled I threw on the business yard because that's where it's suppose to go but then, it blew back on the street due to the severe hurricane winds we have today, but it's good it didn't land on the sidewalk.

Posted on Saturday December 07, 2019 at 11:20AM by Denise Wheeler

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Did You Know?

According to municipal census, The Town of Thorsby showed a 8% population increase from 2012 to 2015.

The old sign which proudly stood on guard to the North entrance to Thorsby was updated in 2017, following change of status from Village to Town - Population 1025