April Updates

Welcome to garden season, Ward 6!

Here are a few highlights from City Council –

Property Tax

Bills are being mailed out this week, and the property tax increase will be LOWER than expected. The provincial government has decided to reinstate part of the funding it withdrew in the 2017 budget by paying for city services it receives for Sask Energy. As a result, Council has reduced the increase from 4.7% to 3.79%. We still have more work to do in terms of creating a long-term, stable funding agreement with the province, but this move is encouraging.

36 Hour Parking

I’ve heard from many of you that the City’s 36-hour rule for moving a vehicle is too restrictive, especially in neighbourhoods where off-street parking is sometimes not available. I am also concerned about folks in or near the Residential Parking Permit (RPP) zones who already endure too many vehicles on their street. Council supported my recommendation to further review an option to allow for longer parking for residents, including the possibility of creating a permit system. The barrier to this is that the City needs full access to streets for maintenance, and whatever is decided will need to ensure this work isn’t compromised. Combined with the review of the RPP program, I’m hoping for improved options for parking longer, a reduction in the number of vehicles per block face and potentially more revenue as commuters currently park for free.

North Downtown

A developer is pitching the City to develop the city yards site for a mixed use of residential, office and retail space that may even include a grocery store. Other developers are also expressing interest and I’m excited to see how this may further enhance our downtown.

Fencing Ponds

Council passed a resolution to partially fence the area around a storm pond near Dundonald School, per recommendations following the tragic death of a child. After hearing from Lakeview residents, teachers and the community association, Council decided not to create further barriers to the storm pond in that neighbourhood.

Joni Mitchell

After many years of effort, Saskatoon will honour international recording artist Joni Mitchell. This home-grown icon will have two areas dedicated to her, including a Promenade at River Landing and a plaque in front of the Broadway Theatre. Many of Mitchell’s songs speak to her roots in Saskatoon and I am grateful for the efforts of her close friends in helping us to achieve this recognition. Dedicating public spaces in this way helps to remind us all that great things are rooted and nurtured here.

One last word

It’s gardening season and like many, I’ll be in the lineups this weekend and will hope to coax my kids into helping me with the planting.  Please check out my Facebook page for timely information about green bins, water barrel rebates and gardening tips.

As we approach Mother’s Day, I’d like to give a shout out to all of the moms out there for everything you do.  We know – it’s a lot. Thank you.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Sincerely,

Cynthia

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