Welcome to another episode of “What’s got Mark fuming now?” Well, I’ll spare you the latest in accusations of deception, lawsuits and calls for my resignation, but it comes with the territory. I do want to thank those folks who sent me notes of support and encouragement but also the sage advice on how to meander through these turbulent times. In fact, the one piece of honest criticism from a local, in his words, was that I was “too nice a guy” to be a politician. It is an election year and nice guys finish last. Or do they? I took it as a compliment.
Time To Vote?
Speaking of an election year, I want to remind everyone throughout Rocky View County (RVC), in case you’ve forgotten, we will be slimming down from nine electoral divisions to seven. At the end of last year, Council passed the bylaw for new electoral divisions and councillor representation to take affect for the 2021 election. This was done after public input and engagement and the overwhelming reason for change was to create equal representation for all of RVC based on population.
Division 1 will now stretch west to east from Bragg Creek to Elbow Valley, bordering Calgary. The northern boundary for Division 1 will run east along Hwy 1 from the MD of Bighorn to Hwy 22, south to Springbank Road and Lower Springbank Road running east until it reaches Calgary. You can find the new electoral division configurations at www. Rockyview.ca (search “2021 elections” for the PDF document). Sadly, Tower Ridge and are will no longer be a part of Division 1 and will become part of Division 2. I am very fortunate to have met many amazing people who live in some of the most breathtaking countryside in Alberta and the world.
Last month, Council had, what was in my opinion, the hardest decision to make regarding a land use redesignation application by Lehigh Hanson Materials for a proposed Bearspaw Area Gravel pit. I really want to commend Administration, staff and my fellow councillors on making it through two full days of public hearing which involved over 500 written letters, 83 videos and almost 300 email submissions during the hearing. At the end of deliberations, Council voted to deny the land use redesignation for the open pit mine.
Closer to home, a couple of hotly discussed topics are circulating throughout the community. First, let me touch on our temporary 4-way traffic light situation at the corner of Highway 22 and White Avenue. As of this writing, Alberta Transportation (AT) has “noted” the feedback that has been brought forth by residents, visitors, businesses and local representatives. A huge shout out to the community for keeping the conversation engaging, informative and most importantly, respectful. Ideas and possible alternative solutions for consideration are not falling on deaf ears thanks to everyone working and collaborating together. Stay tuned for updates as our MLA, Miranda Rosin, in conversation with her colleagues at AT, will update us as soon as information is available.
The other hot topic is the revamp of the RVC Municipal Development Plan (MDP). What is the MDP you may ask? It’s a plan that outlines the vision for Rocky View County’s future from a planning & development perspective and helps guide how and where the County will grow. At Council’s February 16th meeting, the Public Hearing was held and closed after much debate. Because there was an abundance of amendments being proposed, rather than rush into any final decision, Council voted to table the final decision until March 2nd at a Special Council Meeting. This will give Administration time to look at the amendments and prepare a final report for Council discussion.
I want to send a huge shout out to the Bragg Creek Community Association together with the Rink Committee for their “Rink Board” project. As of the end of February, over 60+ businesses both locally and around the area “jumped on board” (sorry for the pun) to purchase advertising space to promote their business. If you want to “get on board” (sorry but I can’t help myself), please contact Brian at email@example.com or call him at 403-835-6149 as there are still spaces available. These will stay up until August 2022! A huge round of cheers as the funds raised will go to help the local community.
Please take care of yourself and your loved ones. The loosened restrictions currently in place are not a sign to relax measures to prevent the spread of Covid. So wear a mask, keep your distance and bubble.
Until next month, stay safe.
– Cheers, Mark