Westwind Weekly News
Marni Nelson of the local Beautification Committee presented to Raymond town council at its March 20 meeting.
Mayor Jim Depew said Nelson was there to share the committee’s plans for Raymond and get feedback from council.
“She had a drone that went over Raymond and just came with a different look of … what it looked like on (the) main street,” he said.
Nelson also presented slides of other municipalities and what they’ve done to beautify their downtown area, including different types of flowers and self-watering pots.
The plans for downtown Raymond’s beautification are still in their infancy.
“They’re trying to decide which direction they want to go,” Depew said.
Engineers to look into Highway 845 upgrade
Although it’s not in Alberta Transportation’s three-year plan, the province is hiring an engineering consultant to look into the eventual upgrading of Highway 845, according to a letter from Minister Brian Mason presented to council.
“There’s a little 1.3-km chunk that isn’t paved,” Depew said. “They haven’t done anything for 12 years, so right now this is the first indication that they’re going to do anything.
“All they have to do when the money’s available is they can come in and redo the road and pave it.”
The minister’s letter to the town notes that the province “will consider this project along with all others across the province” during the next phase of the capital planning process.
Town to get MLA to push government on water issues
Council also received a letter from Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips regarding the deterioration of the water that used to pass through the Milk River Ridge dam, but now goes through three hydroelectric plants.
Town council was hoping to secure a meeting with Phillips.
“The letter we got was not favourable that we’re going to be able to meet with her,” Depew said.
“Maybe this is something our MLA Grant Hunter can pursue.”
Hunter, an opposition MLA, said in his Jan. 16 presentation to council that he would work to pressure the government on issues where the town hasn’t had success, specifically the water quality issue.
The specific issue at hand is that the water smells and tastes poorly in the summer months.
In her letter, Phillips said that “water quality throughout the water management system generally diminishes because the water has been stored within the system for a number of months and is subject to summer temperatures and contaminant loading.”
Citizens on Patrol presents
A delegation from Citizens on Patrol also presented to council to see how the town could assist them in recruiting more volunteers.
Citizens on Patrol is a group of community members who assist the local RCMP detachment in fighting crime.
Depew said he learned a lot from their presentation, such as the fact that each volunteer must go through a criminal background check.
“That’s what they have to get to make sure that they aren’t going to be out aiding crime, that they’re there to prevent it,” he said.
The mayor also learned that the group is part of a province-wide association and that they need a special form of insurance for their vehicles.
“It’s kind of a hard thing, because they go out, they try to be the ears and the eyes of the RCMP, and they go out late at night,” said Depew.
There are currently just five volunteers with Raymond’s Citizens on Patrol.
“That’s why we’d like to help them,” Depew said.