Council Update for Byelection Candidates

Below are the long-term challenges that are facing Carmangay that Council and administration have been trying to find solutions to.  It is hoped that this will help inform the public and byelection candidates and we move forward together to find solutions.

Focus on New Commercial Businesses and Invigorating the Home Market

There has been some good recent progress in building up the number of commercial properties in Carmangay from the time 25 years ago when it accounted for about 40% of the tax base.

 Residential Taxes  Commercial Taxes  Residential Taxes w Inflation  Commercial Taxes w Inflation
1994  $         62,830  $         49,888  $         99,623  $         79,102
2000  $       102,024  $         12,567  $       144,599  $         17,811
2010  $       249,820  $                  –  $       291,065  $                  –
2017  $       262,461  $         28,289  $       273,301  $         29,457
2019  $       258,284  $         45,205  $       258,284  $         45,205

This Council has held the line on residential taxes and the amount that the Village has collected has gone down in the last few years.

The number of homes has gone down by 20 in the last 2 decades from 160 in 2000 to 140 in 2019, which is a reduction of 12.5%.

 Number of Homes
1994 117
2000 160
2010 135
2017 140
2019 140

This means that the remaining homeowners need to account for this loss to support the cost of utilities as well as taxes for services and infrastructure.  Bare lots as well as properties turned back to the Village under tax recovery produce significantly lower to no tax and utility revenue.

Focus on New Revenue Opportunities and Cost Savings

Administration has looked for new ways to create revenue and keep residential taxes the same or lower.  These include;

  • The current Village of Carmangay staff have done water and sanitary projects for other municipalities as well as outside groups. This has provided some additional revenue that allows the Village to reduce the cost of its own work.  It is the hope of administration to continue to expand these opportunities.
  • The Telus tower will provide new lease and tax revenue to the Village of Carmangay of just under $10,000 per year.
  • The Solar Farm which is 100% covered by capital grants and will cut the cost of electricity to the Village by at least $13,000 per year and more as electricity rates climb. There is additional capacity as well that can be used if expansion of Village buildings or infrastructure is considered.
  • Working with the other 4 Villages to find ways to lower costs and get more value. These include online data storage for archived files, using the same accounting system as well as working together on hydrant flow testing and other infrastructure work.  This is hoped to be expanded moving forward.

The Focus on upgrading the Water and Sanitary Infrastructure

Carmangay has an aging infrastructure that has required ongoing investment of capital grants to start to remediate.  As an example, the pumping station pumps that were recently replace were from the 1970’s.  Some of the fire hydrants are from the 1950’s as are some of the sanitary lines.  The existing water plant is about 2/3 to ¾ through its lifecycle.  Additionally, the water flow of approximately 185 gallons per minute is far from sufficient for fire suppression which requires a minimum of 600 gallons per minute but should be closer to 1,000 gallons per minute.

Meet Your Candidates

Below are the submitted biographies and platforms of the candidates that will be posted as they are received.  A mailout of the same information will be sent out the week of November 30, 2020.

Sue Dahl

Hi. My name is Sue Dahl. I moved into the Carmangay area in 1993 when Steve Dahl and I moved onto the family farm together. Though our marriage didn’t last, my love for Carmangay and its people did, so I relocated into the village with my two children. We rented for a short time before purchasing our home on Carman Street.

I have worked within the Village of Carmangay for the last twenty years. First at the Grange Hotel, for about 17 years, and then for 3 years as Administrative Assistant in the Village Office. I have been an active member of the Fire Department since 2002, am a director on the Ag Society and a director the Curling Club.

I have questioned this council’s actions since the day they were elected. Everything from money management, to transparency to accountability. For these reasons, I feel I need to step up to try and make a difference for the benefit of the community. That is why I am running for the vacant Village Council position.

Doug Fraser

Hello, my name is Doug Fraser and I am running for Village Councillor.  I have lived most of my life in Carmangay and I love the community I live in.  I have been married to same wonderful woman for forty three years and raised two sons who are married and blessed me with six grandchildren.

I have been a member of our Fire Department and sat on the Fire Association.  I presently sit on the Community Centre Board and I am a member of the Lions Club and of the Ag Society.

I would like to represent our community as a member of Council.  I know it is hard to please everyone but I will look at every situation and base my vote on the positives and negatives for the good of our community.

My youngest grandson made me a button and sent it to me that says Vote Papa, so I ask you to “Vote Papa”.

Maureen Travers

Hello, I am Maureen Travers, widow of the late Michael Travers.

My husband and I arrived in Edmonton from England in 1968, Michael had accepted a Junior professorship in the Department of Art and Design at the U of A.

I accepted a position on the Review Panel to update the MGA.  I studied Municipal Law and was appointed to the public affairs bureau – I prepared promotional material, designed Government souvenirs for the Premier to present on trips, and the winning float at a Klondike Days.

I studied for my certificates in Municipal administration from the U of A, moved south to Cowley to be their Administrator, I received the Ernest Newman Award, and became Strathmore’s administrator, then Town Manager.  Afterwards, I went to work for Revenue Canada.

I moved to Carmangay from Saskatchewan over 2 years ago with my husband Michael Travers, who did not know he had cancer, from which he passed away in August 2019.  I take this opportunity to thank the Carmangay fire department for looking after Michael, and all the residents of Carmangay who were so kind, and helpful in my bereavement.

When we drove into the village, we immediately felt at home – a Railway crossing, Lots of beautiful trees, a great mixture of houses, windmills – then wow!  A sunset that could outdo my stained-glass windows.

If I can be of assistance to other candidates, or you let me know!  This election – will be a run up to next year’s general election!  Thank you to the other candidates and thank you for reading this article.