Calgary Minute: Crisis Calls, Community Projects, and Fire Department Budget
Calgary Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Calgary politics
This Week In Calgary:
There will be a meeting of the Executive Committee on Tuesday at 9:30 am. The Committee will receive a Q4 2022 report from the Green Line Board as well as discuss a bylaw intended to authorize the City to go into debt with the Canada Infrastructure Bank for up to $168 million to purchase up to 259 zero-emission buses.
Also on Tuesday, there will be a Special Meeting of Council at 12:30 pm. No agenda is available yet but the Notice of Meeting states that the intended purpose is collective bargaining.
- The Event Centre Committee will meet at 9:30 am on Wednesday. Unfortunately, the Event Centre update the Committee will hear will be held in-camera.
Last Week In Calgary:
The President of the Calgary Firefighters Association expressed concern with preliminary budget documents, stating that Council keeps approving new communities but not growing the Fire Department’s budget at a similar pace. The budget documents apparently show that a request for $52 million in operating funds and $51 million in capital funds may be delayed until the next budget cycle - four years from now. Your house might burn down, but you’ll sleep better at night knowing the City budgeted for zero-emission buses instead, right?
It was announced that 17 Calgary projects, targeted for the development of gathering spaces and increasing enjoyment of community spaces, will receive $6.6 million in federal funding. The City itself is receiving $3.35 million of the money, which will fund eight projects, one of which is aimed at presenting Indigenous knowledge on park signs. The Contemporary Calgary Arts Society will receive $750,000, the Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary will get $639,750 to create an Elders’ Community Centre, and several community associations, including the Calgary Downtown Association, will receive money for their projects.
- The Alex Community Health Centre has been chosen to launch a pilot program focused on the response to mental health crisis calls. Over the next 12 months, mobile crisis teams, made up of support workers trained to deal with mental health and addiction issues, will respond to non-emergency 911 calls as well as calls to 211. A non-uniformed police officer will also be paired with the support workers for the initial months of the program. The project will cost $2.5 million, which will come from the Community Safety Investment Framework.
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