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RFD- 4039 Bylaws   Item #   10. c.    
Regular Council Meeting Agenda   
Meeting Date: 11/09/2020  
Title:    C-1129-20 - 2021 Fees and Charges Bylaw - First Reading - Frostad
Department: Corporate Services  
Strategic Vision Element: This topic relates to all three of the City’s strategic vision elements contained in Council’s Strategic Plan Related Goal: Spruce Grove has a robust, growing economic base that generates increased revenues to support the City’s high standards for services and programs.

Information
Request for Decision Summary
First reading of Bylaw C-1129-20 is being brought forward for Council's consideration. This bylaw authorizes the 2021 fees for water, wastewater and waste management, transit, the cemetery and tribute park, fines and penalties and other general administrative services.

Proposed Motion
That first reading be given to Bylaw C-1129-20 - 2021 Fees and Charges Bylaw.
Background/Analysis
The recommended 2021-2023 Corporate Plan proposes a utility rate increase of 2% in 2021 to meet the operating and capital costs.  The impact on a household with an average monthly consumption of 14 cubic meters would be $1.70/month ($20.40/year).

Utility rates are partially driven by the cost of purchasing water and processing wastewater.  The Capital Region Parkland Water Services Commission has projected a 2021 rate of $2.07/m3 (5% increase from 2020).  Administration for the Alberta Capital Region Wastewater Commission have advised they are proposing a 2021 rate of $1.36/m3 to their board in early December (10% increase from 2020).

In addition to water and wastewater costs, the utility rate increase reflects infrastructure maintenance and replacement, market cost of construction and maintenance or a surplus balance.

Other services with proposed increases include:
  • Supply of water service only to Parkland County - $3.573/m3
  • Supply of water and wastewater for the purpose of new land development - $953/ha
  • Supply of wastewater service only - $26.19/unit/month
  • City of Spruce Grove bulk water station - $6.207/m3
  • Snow Dumping - Loads up to and including tandem axle truck (per load) - $40.00
  • Snow Dumping - Loads over tandem axle truck (per load) - $80.00

The utility increases included in this list are part of the overall 2% increase required in the utility bylaw. 

Other explanations of changes include the following:
  • Section 2.7 - The City signed a new contract with Parkland County to provide transit service under which the City bills the County a monthly fee for service to Acheson.
  • Section 8.3d - Notice of penalties for late payment will no longer be mailed to the customer but will appear on the customers utility bill.  These two documents were arriving in mailboxes simultaneously and were requiring two separate processes.  With the new utility billing format the notice will appear on the bill and will create time and cost efficiencies in City processes.
  • Schedule A (RCMP Fees) - These fees have been removed as the Town of Stony Plain now administers these fees and subsequently pays the City for a share of the revenue.
  • Schedule A (Snow Dumping Definition update) - The description of these fees have been changed to simplify the pricing structure as 99% of trucks hauling snow fall into the tandem or end-dump category.
Options/Alternatives
For utility rates to be effectively communicated, the bylaw will need to receive third reading by December 14, 2020.
Consultation/Engagement
Utility rates are discussed in detail as part of the Committee of the Whole and Council corporate plan deliberations.
Implementation/Communication
Communication of the utility rates increase will occur through the Examiner, City of Spruce Grove website, social media outlets and on the utility bill to be issued in early January.  Notice has been given to Parkland County of the proposed rate increase for 2021.
Impacts
n/a

Fiscal Impact
Financial Implications:
Utility operations and capital projects are funded with utility revenue.  Neither grants nor taxes are used to subsidize rates.
Attachments
Proposed C-1129-20 - 2021 Fees and Charges Bylaw
2021 Fees and Charges Bylaw - Redline

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