News Releases

Council Updates

Posted on: June 13, 2018

Council briefs for June 11, 2018

Smoking cannabis in public prohibited
Council unanimously passed a Streets and Public Place Use bylaw amendment that prohibits smoking or vaping cannabis in all public places. In advance of federal legislation legalizing recreational use of cannabis, council has limited smoking cannabis to private residences and properties. Council decided to align regulations on cannabis with limits on consumption of alcohol in public spaces. Council will review the prohibition a year after legalization to assess the experience in Banff and other communities. Council also asked for a report examining the concept of dedicated locations or facilities for smoking tobacco and cannabis, and a report exploring the possibility of prohibiting smoking tobacco in public.

Handicapped parking included on-street in Woonerff design
Council directed administration to include two handicapped parking stalls and remove on-street parking in the design of the permanent version of the Bear Street Woonerff. Following positive feedback from businesses, residents and visitors, the final design intended to pedestrianize the streetscape will remove street parking and loading zones. Deliveries and loading will still be available in the two alleys adjacent to businesses, and there will still be access to the 52-stall parking lot on Bear Street. This is the fourth and final year of the Bear Street Woonerff trial. Funds are budgeted for 2018 to create a detailed design making the Woonerff permanent, with construction budgeted in 2019.

Sublease signed for 101 Bear until 2030
Council directed administration to secure a sublease agreement for 101 Bear Street until 2030. The Whyte Foundation has the head lease on the land, and the Town subleases it for the library, seniors centre, and a number of other community programs. In 1983, the Whyte Foundation entered into an agreement with the Banff School District, which managed community affairs prior to incorporation, which allowed the construction of the building. As The Whyte Foundation does not view the sublease as perpetual, the sublease would end in 2030 and be renegotiated at that time. The Whyte Foundation has not indicated that they have any interest in terminating the agreement, however if they chose to do so, the building would revert to the Whyte’s control. From December 6, 2016 to now, the Town has put on hold all capital projects for this location while negotiating the sublease. With the signing of this sublease, the Town will resume capital projects that have a useful life ending prior to 2030. Any capital projects with a longer useful life would be brought back separately for council consideration. Current projects that could proceed with council approval include the connecting trail through to Bow Ave called for in the Trails Master Plan, public parking lot improvements at the rear of the museum, and landscape changes at the front of the library.

Arrangement signed for solid waste removal in Lake Louise
Council directed administration to enter into a five year arrangement with Parks Canada for solid waste removal services within the Lake Louise Field Unit. One of the Banff National Park Management Plan’s key strategies is to expand and improve upon waste diversion. Given the Town of Banff’s experience and ability to effectively manage solid waste removal, anticipated benefits include non-duplication of services and an efficient mechanism to manage the solid waste of the Lake Louise Field Unit. Equipment purchases and staff are required, and council approved:
  • Amending the 2018 capital budget by $754,000 to allow for the purchase of: one fully equipped residential style side-load garbage truck, one fully equipped tandem axle cable hoist lift truck, and three roll-off bins to support of described services.
  • Increasing the Resource Recovery operating budget by $271,816 annually for the associated wages, benefits, materials, supplies, contracted services and amortization for the associated services. This amount will be prorated to the actual start date of the arrangement.
  • Increasing the 2018 Fleet Services operating budget by $31,100 annually for wages, benefit, materials, supplies and contracted services for the associated services. This amount will be prorated to the actual start date of the arrangement.
  • That the approved $37,600 budgeted in the 2018 Fleet Services budget allocation for interim service in the Lake Louise budget will be reallocated to Country Run.
New waste diversion targets for Banff
Council voted to accept the Town of Banff Options for Waste Diversion Targets and Tactics report as information, and use it as a guide for increasing waste diversion within the Town of Banff. The proposed multi-phase plan would increase the amount of waste diverted from landfill to 70% by 2028. The initiatives in the plan will come back to Council for consideration during the budget process. The Town has a current waste diversion rate of 46%, including both the residential and non-residential sectors, but excluding construction, renovation or demolition materials, or biosolids. The report provided detailed analysis of the Town’s current situation and a range of improvement tactics. The non-residential sector generates 65% of the waste stream, while the residential sector generates 32% of the waste stream. The Town of Banff’s recycling programs have been successful in achieving a significant level of waste diversion, however, opportunities remain to further increase the diversion of valuable materials from the waste stream. In particular, increasing recycling of food scraps, yard and garden waste, and mixed paper in both the non-residential and residential sectors. Components of the plan that council will consider during budget deliberations include:
  • Increasing community waste diversion through public education and communications in the residential and non-residential sectors.
  • Increasing waste diversion in the residential sector by adding 63 residential collection bins for food and food-soiled paper and 20 residential three-stream recycling bins.
  • Increasing waste diversion in the non-residential sector by supporting Banff Food Rescue, infrastructure for diversion of food and food-soiled paper, allowing yard and garden materials in food scraps bins, downtown recycling depots, allowing recyclables in residents collection bins, adjustment of transfer site rates and banning food from the non-residential waste stream.
  • Directing administration to bring back specific budgets support of Banff Food Rescue and implementation of downtown district recycling depots.
  • Committing to a target of 70% waste diversion by 2028, and a long-term aspirational goal of sending zero waste to landfill. 
  • Directing administration to return in the 3rd quarter of 2018 with a briefing on construction, renovation and demolition waste generation, diversion and disposal trends and opportunities for the Town of Banff to increase diversion in this sector.
  • Directing administration to return in the 4th quarter of 2018 with a briefing on Extended Producer Responsibility, and the role it can play in decreasing the financial, logistical and administrative burden for municipalities in the realm of waste diversion and recycling.
Update on facility energy consumption
Council received a briefing on the energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) of municipal facilities. The total amount of energy used by municipal facilities in 2017 was 15,647 MWh (megawatt-hours). Approximately 45.5% was electricity from the Alberta grid, and 52.5% was natural gas. The remaining 2% (approximately 300 MWh) was electricity generated using solar power from panels on municipal buildings. Minor quantities of diesel, propane, firewood, and other fuels used in Town’s buildings are small by comparison and do not significantly affect these totals. This could change in the future if biomass heating is adopted to heat some of the Town’s buildings. Approximately 1,358 MWh of Renewable Energy Credits (REC) were also purchased by the Town in 2017. Although these do not affect total energy demand, they do help to reduce the GHG emissions associated with electricity consumption by increasing the fraction of electricity that comes from renewable sources. The total GHG emissions from municipal facilities in 2017 was approximately 5,690 tonnes CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent). This is 15% fewer emissions than if the RECs had not been purchased.

Update on status on park management plan
Council received an update on the status of the Banff National Park Management Plan preliminary scoping exercise in advance of the review and update of the plan that will be conducted in 2020. A number of broad topic areas have been identified, but once the formal review and update of the Banff National Park Management Plan begins, administration will seek further direction from council on key considerations and emerging issues that they wish to see addressed in the plan.



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