Happy Family Day! I hope this weekend been a time for some fun and relaxation with family and there is a bit more fun in store for you this week too. Speaking of fun, check out the Community Events & Reminders section for some family week activities and upcoming winter events.
City Council meets on Wednesday Feb 22nd at 9:30am. I've shared some highlights below along with updates on programs, projects, and planning. You'll find a full listing of what Council will be making decisions about this month along with instructions about how to engage with the Council meeting in the last section.
Work is underway to ensure everything is ready to get a green cart to each single-family household this spring. This long planned addition to our curbside waste programs is critical to diverting more waste. This program is designed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and extending the life of the landfill to avoid an expensive premature replacement. To read about the program visit saskatoon.ca/greencart.
Your Green Cart Questions Answered
Answers to most of the questions I've been asked over the last few days can be found here. I've answered the most common ones here:
Q: The most common question I've had is about pickup location.
A: The pickup of green carts will be the same as where your blue and black carts are picked up. This is true even for households that have a green cart already. You may need to move your bin to get it ready for spring pickup.
Q: I've also been chatting with some folks who anticipate that they won't have much use for a green bin. They want to know if they can opt out or pay less.
A: There will be an affordability rebate initiated in 2024 for households below a certain income threshold and I'll advertise it when its available. I am also open to future changes to our waste programs and billing to reflect usage such as pay per tip models. These won't be considered until all three carts have been in use for a while, and are most likely to be applied to carts that we should be diverting waste from.
Downtown Entertainment District - District Planning
As work continues to establish a plan for the potential Downtown Event and Entertainment District (DEED) I have been taking opportunities to chat with many of you about where I'm at on this planning. Rather than try to capture that here, I've written a blog post and I invite you to check it out. Long story short, I really encourage you to engage about the 'district' part of the project. This will begin in the spring. I think your perspective on the future of our downtown and what you want to see there is really valuable whether or not you have an Arena at the top of your list; and no, the decision on the DEED has not yet been made. My mind is certainly not made up. More details on my blog. And for more thorough background, visit the City's project page.
I've been chatting with a number of residents in Ward 2 as well as hearing from neighbours in Fairhaven about the changes in pedestrian activity related to the opening of the Emergency Wellness Center (EWC) at its new location in Fairhaven. City agencies such as Saskatoon Fire, Saskatoon Police, and Roadways are committed to responding appropriately and have increased coordination among their work as well as proactive presence, supporting residents both at the EWC and in the neighbourhoods adjacent. Everyone I've spoken to is in agreement that a central challenge here is there are residents without homes who do not have access to the housing and supports that they need in our community - simply because it does not exist. Successful and dignified complex-needs housing models exist, and I intend to continue not only supporting the City response in the area as outlined, but calling on the Provincial Government to invest in the housing services that our neighbours need.
Engagement & Updates - Ward 2
To see all projects open for engagement visit www.saskatoon.ca/engage
Free Wifi pilot
You may have heard updates from me before about a Free Wifi Pilot. Either way, it is now live! If you live in the NW corner of Pleasant Hill or the NE Corner of Meadowgreen you may be in the pilot program area. Check out the details here! The pilot is intended to address unequal access to service and information, commonly referred to as the ‘digital divide’ and I'm excited to see it live and ready for use!
A reminder to anyone who uses Harry Bailey Leisure Center - the facility will be closing on March 31st for 18-24 months of renovations. I know many Ward 2 residents will miss that access over the next couple of years, but I'm excited about the upgrades and improvements that we can expect at the end!
Decisions - upcoming
Due to the ecological value and sensitivity of the natural areas known as the North East Swale and Small Swale, City Council has decided to delineate the areas for preservation ahead of the planning for a neighbourhood in the area. This process is complicated, and also important. A number of recommendations have been presented and I am working hard to understand what a reasonable balance looks like that will enable successful preservation alongside urban infill development. Both are important for the sustainability of our community. (More can be found at Item 9.1.3 in Regular Business Agenda).
Elm Wood disposal update
The City conducted a pilot project last season to explore new ways to promote proper disposal of elm, including an elm load price cap at the landfill. The pilot showed that there is a long way to go to have elm properly handled consistently in our community. Council is being asked to endorse having Elm wood accepted at the future Recovery Park and to continue exploring other improvements (item 8.1.2 in Regular Business agenda).
Community Events & Reminders
Family week activities - Check out some great activities happening this week!
Family Day - Adjusted services & hours here.
Wintershines continues through the week too!
Neighbourhood Winter Carnivals and Celebrations coming up - check your Community Association pages for more details!
- King George: February 25
- Riversdale: March 12
- Pleasant Hill: March 11
City Council | February 22nd (Wednesday)
City Council meets on Wednesday. Brief highlights are outlined below. Click here to find the full agenda. Council continues to meet virtually. Correspondence on Council items can be made in writing or as a request to speak (accommodated by phone or in person). Meetings will continue to be live streamed.
Regular Business Meeting | 9:30 AM
- Home Energy Loan Program update
- Elm Wood Disposal Pilot results
- Saskatoon Accessibility Advisory Committee work plan
- Development Appeals Board annual report
- Tax Abatement for affordable housing
- Bylaw replacement - Plumbing Permits
- Board of Revision - annual report
- Federation of Canadian Municipalities - fees
- North Saskatoon - Acquisition of development land
- 2022 Property Tax Liens
- Business Improvement Districts - budget approval
- Reporting on Council expenses
- travel & training
- car allowance
- Appointments & Resignations - various
- Northeast & Small Swale Boundary Endorsement
- Bylaw amendments - updating Court of Queen's bench references
- Bylaw - Albert Community Centre Reserve exception
- Bylaw amendment - Bicycle bylaw
- Bylaw amendment - Vehicles for Hire bylaw
- Motion (Dubois) : Fireworks - Lunar New Year
Public Hearing Meeting | 6:00 PM
- Intent to Borrow: Citywide snow response
- Proclamations & Flag Raisings
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