June 24th, 2024

City council to consider water bylaw amendment

By Al Beeber - Lethbridge Herald on May 28, 2024.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDabeeber@lethbridgeherald.com

Lethbridge city council today will be asked to give first reading to an amendment to the Water Services Bylaw.
It will also consider an official business motion by councillor John Middleton-Hope regarding customer parking at City Hall.
Council meets today at 12:30 p.m. in council chambers at City Hall.
A presentation to be submitted and presented by Director of Infrastructure Services Joel Sanchez stays the proposed amendment doesn’t include changes to rates and utility revenues. And no implications are expected for current and future operating/capital budgets.
The bylaw provides the necessary support for the implementation of the City’s water rationing action plan.
The rationing plan contains measures on various matters. They include, says Sanchez’ presentation:
• Stage 1 Outdoor Water Rationing
Prohibited actions (unless approved by the engineer):
• The filling of private in-ground or portable pools/spas/hot tubs larger than 3,000 litres will be prohibited in Stage 1.
Restricted actions:
• The time of day when outdoor watering is allowed has been clarified. Formerly it
would read “between 6 p.m. and 10 a.m.”, it will read “before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m. on your designated day.”
• The day which city resident are allowed to water up to two hours has also been
clarified. Formerly, it would read “Waste and Recycling Day,” however with the
compost program now in place, it will read on your “blue/black” cart day.
• Stage 2 Outdoor Water Rationing
Prohibited actions (unless approved by the engineer):
• These remain the same as in Stage 1.
Restricted actions:
The following exemptions for new lawns trees and shrubs have been added to the restrictions for Stage 2:
• Watering permitted only for sod or trees/shrubs that were laid or planted within 10 days of the restrictions coming into force or during the restriction period.
• For the first 10 days, only two hours total per day is allowed.
• After 10 days, the regular outdoor restrictions apply.
• Watering permitted only for lawns seeded within 10 days of the restrictions coming into force or during the restriction period.
• For the first 20 days, only two hours per day is allowed. After 20 days, the regular outdoor restrictions apply.
The amount you are allowed to water is reduced from two hours in Stage 1 to only one hour in Stage 2.
• Stage 3 Outdoor Water Rationing
In Stage 3 the prohibitions get much stronger and all outdoor watering must be by handheld container.
Prohibited actions (unless approved by the engineer):
• Filling outdoor pools, ponds, and hot tubs.
• Use of outdoor irrigation sprinklers.
Restricted actions:
• Outdoor watering only allowed using handheld container.
Stage 4 Outdoor Water Rationing
In Stage 4 the prohibitions continue to build on previous stages, resulting in no outdoor watering. The use of rented fire hydrants and water for construction purposes is also suspended during this stage.
The presentation states that “Appendix F of the 2016 version of Water Services Bylaw 3999 was updated to reflect the addition of potential penalties for the Industrial, Commercial, Institutional (ICI) users. The amended bylaw will now include different penalty rates for residential vs. ICI. The penalties for residential users were not changed.”
Updated penalties are:
• Stage 1 Water Rationing Order
Residential: $100
Industrial, Commercial, Institutional: $500
• Stage 2 Water Rationing Order
Residential: $200
Industrial, Commercial, Institutional: $700
• Stage 3 Water Rationing Order
Residential: $300
Industrial, Commercial, Institutional: $1,000
• Stage 4 Water Rationing Order
Residential: $400
Industrial, Commercial, Institutional: $1,500
Non-compliance with any and all prohibitions associated with the declaration of an
Emergency Water Rationing Order:
• Residential: $500
Industrial, Commercial, Institutional: $2,000.
Middleton-Hope’s parking motion calls for council to direct Administration to prepare a report on the feasibility, costs, benefits and control mechanisms to allow a free 15-minute “ongoing grace period’ for parking stalls in front of City Hall on the south side of 4 Avenue between Stafford Drive and 11 St. and report back to the Economic and Finance Standing Policy Committee of city council by July 11.
His motioin states that complimentary parking behind City Hall is not well known which can present a barrier to people accessing the building.
His motion notes that council previously has created grace periods for metered parking in front of the building.
The consent agenda has numerous items council will address including recommendation from the Economic and Standing SPC – which consists of all council members – to defer until Aug. 31 payment by the Lethbridge Housing Association for the servicing costs of bringing utilities to the supportive housing project it is developing on Stafford Drive North.
That item also includes a recommendation that Administration direct LHA to report back by the end of July with information on the project’s budget, budget pressures and the costs associated with them and other project information regarding its request for $1,050,000 in funding for the project.
The consent agenda also includes a recommendation from Economic and Finance SPC that the City provide $400,000 in cash and cash-in-kind to support a bid by the Lethbridge Curling Club to host the 2026 Scotties Tournament of Hearts. The money wouldn’t be paid unless the bid is successful.
And council will also consider a request from Economic and Finance SPC to approve an updated request for $140,000 in funding for the PlayOn! Canada street hockey tournament scheduled for 2025 and 2026.

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