Lesser Slave Lake Regional Arts Council
Connie Baird and Katrina Hill with the regional arts presented to council. They had three related requests. First that the town give the arts council $40,000 for two murals in 2024. In 2022, the town gave the arts council $26,000 for murals which was enough for two. In 2023, the town gave them $10,000. The arts council tried to fundraise and applied for another grant, but without success. Also, all but one mural bid was higher than 2022. Most were in the $25,000 to $30,000 range. The arts council agreed to a $10,000 one, but the building was unavailable in 2023. It should be available in 2024. Above this, the arts council members painted one mural on the Brick.
“It was our first stab at doing one of our own,” said Baird. It went well and the arts council is interested in doing it again.
The second part of the presentation was that the arts council would be willing to work for some of this money, specifically by buying plants and planting them in the street-level planters around town. (Not to be confused with the hanging baskets, which the Kinettes fundraise for).
Have you been to Athabasca recently? Baird asked council. Its planters are very impressive. Slave Lake could do better.
The third request was for permission to replace the plants in front of the welcome sign with a flower boat. The arts council would pay it.
Lesser Slave Regional Fire Services Chief Alex Pavcek introduced Deputy Fire Chief Mike Bissell and the six fire students(see photo on Page 17). The students are part of fire or fire and primary care paramedic (PCP) programs at LSRFS and Northern Lakes College. The students are Dominic Waknuk (Edmonton), fire/PCP, Erica Neufeld (High Level) fire/PCP, Chad Cochrane (Brooklyn, Nova Scotia) fire, Jacob Zazelenchuk (formerly Slave Lake, now Edmonton) fire, Lee Morrison (Bible Hill, Nova Scotia) fire, and Ayrton Falconer (Saskatoon, Sask.) fire/PCP.
Springwood snow removal
Council debated whether to change the location of snow storage on Springwood Drive NE to always be on the no parking (north) side of the road. The second option was to leave it the way it is: alternating sides from year to year. A third option was to remove the no parking zone. The reason for the proposed change was to make the road safer.
“I’m in favour of this change,” said Councillor Steve Adams, referring to the north-side only option.
“Why was the no parking sign put in?” asked Councillor Ali Mouallem.
At the time, it was one of the narrowest streets in town, answered Courtorier. Since then, there have been road built just as narrow.
Councillor Gramlich had spoken to land owners in the area. The ones on the south were thrilled to have the snow on the north. The ones on the north were not. He was against changing the snow removal plan.
“I’m fine with status quo,” said Councillor Brice Ferguson.
Councillor Adams made a motion to change the snow removal to the north side every year. This council was defeated, four to two, with Councillor Adams and Councillor Kim Hughes in favour.
From June to August 2023, the Town of Slave Lake hired Truly Creative Marketing in Slave Lake to run a digital tourism campaign. The year before it hired an Edmonton company to do a tourism campaign. A lot of numbers were thrown around, but the crux of it was that the 2023 campaign was more successful and economical. It cost $6,388.29, with a cost per click of $0.30. The 2022 campaign cost $7,451.53, with a cost per click of $3.74.
Truly Creative Marketing gave the town a discount to prove they could do it, said Jason Swanson, manager of communications and economic development. Therefore, a 2024 quote would be higher.
Council was very much in favour of more digital tourism marketing, but split on whether to perfect a summer campaign before starting a winter one.
The Slave Lake Regional Tourism Society is working on a winter tourism campaign, said Councillor Hughes.
Council had met with Martin Long Alberta Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Health in September. In the agenda package, they had a response from him. Based on the letter, council had asked him about programs and extra funding for rural healthcare professionals including doctors and nurse practitioners (NP).
Métis Nation of Alberta District 21 (formerly Region 5) requested that town council have the Métis flag raised at town hall on November 14. Also, for Mayor Frankie Ward to attend the flag raising to say a few words.
Council approved the request and added that the lights at Rennie Hall Plaza would be put to blue and white (flag colours) for that week starting on Nov 14. Métis Week is Nov. 13 to 19.
Extended Producer Responsibility
Town council decided to ‘pre-register’ for one-on-one supports to help guide administration through registering for Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) which is new provincial rules on recycling.
Councillor Ferguson had been at a webinar about EPR.
“It (pre-registering) doesn’t commit us to anything,” he said, so he was in favor.
“We’d be remiss if we didn’t investigate further,” said Councillor Adams.
State of the Lake
Council had a few closing comments. The Slave Lake episode of ‘Still Standing’ aired on Oct. 17. People who missed it can watch it on CBC Gem. On Oct. 28, Stage North has a country concert and Canyon Creek Recreation Association has an adult-only Halloween supper and dance.