Calgary Minute: Climate Emergency, Amazon Investment, and Tax Hikes Are Back
Calgary Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Calgary politics
This Week In Calgary:
The week at City Hall kicks off with a Combined Council Meeting today at 9:30 am. The climate emergency debate is scheduled for this meeting, with only three more votes needed for the motion to pass than it has sponsors. City Administration is also suggesting a bylaw amendment to require vaccine passports at food courts.
- There is also a Community Development Committee meeting, a Calgary Planning Commission meeting, and an Audit Committee meeting listed in the Council Calendar for this week, but - as of Sunday night - these meetings are not listed in the official meeting list yet, so it's unclear whether they will be going ahead yet or not.
The 2021 AUMA Convention is set to take place November 17th - 19th, in person, at the Edmonton Convention Centre. The AUMA is the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association - think of it as a kind of union for city governments. Their convention is set to hold discussions on a variety of topics including strategic planning, "working the bureaucracy", cyber security, and drug decriminalization. Premier Jason Kenney, Minister of Municipal Affairs Ric McIver, and NDP leader Rachel Notley are all set to attend and give speeches.
Last Week In Calgary:
A notice of motion to declare a climate emergency in the City of Calgary was delivered to the City's Executive Committee on Tuesday. The motion was identified by Calgary's newly-elected Mayor Jyoti Gondek as her top priority after the election and the motion also sets a target for net-zero emissions for the City of Calgary by 2050. The motion will be debated further this week (see above).
The City has proposed several adjustments to the final year of Calgary's 2019-2022 budget, that, if accepted by Council, will see Calgarians pay more come tax time. A tax increase between 0.64% and 1% is expected, with City Administration also proposing a freeze to blue, black, and green cart rates and a decrease to building safety and development base fees. To be fair, a tax hike of 0.64% to 1% isn't too bad, but isn’t it amazing how quickly the “tax freeze” gets forgotten once the election is over?
- Amazon announced they’re set to construct a world-class $4.3 billion cloud computing server hub in the Calgary area. The exact location of the hub isn't being released for security reasons, but we hear it's planned for just outside the City of Calgary legal boundaries. The new Mayor and Council may want to reflect on why the list of businesses setting up shop just outside of the City continues to grow.
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