Thursday, 16 May 2013 09:00

Saskatchewan city mayors meet in Swift Current

Written by  Matthew Liebenberg
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City mayors and senior administrators from across the province were in Swift Current last week to attend a meeting of the Saskatchewan City Mayors Caucus (CMC).


Swift Current Mayor Jerrod Schafer, who was elected last year to be the CMC vice-chair, hosted the May 8 to 10 event at the iplex, where the visitors were able to visit the Saskatchewan Hockey Hall of Fame.
Schafer said there was a lot of positive feedback about Swift Current and it was the first time that some delegates have visited the city.
“I’m learning things from other communities and hopefully they saw some things in Swift Current that they can take back,” he mentioned.
He felt the discussions were productive and a variety of issues were highlighted.
“I think efforts to continue to work with the provincial government were top of mind for mayors,” he said. “Certainly the whole concept of regional planning and regional growth, the relationship between cities and rural municipalities that surround those cities and the planning that’s taking place around that is a key issue.”
The issue of infrastructure development also came up during these discussions. Federal funding for local and economic infrastructure projects will commence in 2014.
“Everybody has been lobbying the provincial and federal government for help there and I can’t imagine a federal program that isn’t going to be contingent on provincial funding of some sort,” Schafer said.
The CMC discussions resulted in an interesting concept to address the financial pressures experienced by seniors in many communities as a result of tax increases. It will allow seniors to use the equity in their homes to defer the payment of property taxes until they sell their homes.
“It’s happening in Alberta and British Columbia,” he said. “We need our provincial government to get on board with something like this. … It’s a great program in terms of keeping seniors living in homes rather than having to go to government assisted living complexes of some sort.”

Read 12988 times Last modified on Wednesday, 15 May 2013 15:40

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