Lethbridge Minute: Taxi Rates, Parking Fines, and Affordable Housing Funding
Lethbridge Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Lethbridge politics
This Week In Lethbridge:
- The Economic Standing Policy Committee will meet on Wednesday at 1:30 pm. The Committee will discuss a proposed increase in parking fines in the downtown area. Several residents and business groups have provided submissions to Councillors on the matter. The Committee will also hear a status report on the recommendations made by KPMG for Economic Development Lethbridge.
The Cultural and Social Standing Policy Committee will meet on Thursday at 1:30 pm. During this meeting, the Committee will hear several presentations, including one regarding the Buffalo Treaty, given by the Vice Provost of Indigenous Studies at the University of Lethbridge, and another concerning the Voices of Youth Mental Wellness Community Forum. The Committee will also be presented with the finalized draft of the updated Heritage Management Plan and hear the results of the CultureLINK pilot project.
- It's Valentine's Day tomorrow, and we hope everyone has a wonderful day filled with love and appreciation. The day is dedicated to showing the special people in our lives how much we care, so let's take a moment to show someone special how much they mean to us. The Galt Museum and Archives is hosting a “Watercolour Valentines” art activity at 10:30 am for adults and seniors if you're looking to create a gift for someone.
Last Week In Lethbridge:
City Council approved plans to allocate funds towards the development of more affordable housing. The plan aims to address the shortage of affordable housing options in the city and to help residents who are struggling with high housing costs. The funds will be used to support various affordable housing initiatives, including the construction of new buildings and the renovation of existing properties.
- Council delayed the decision to raise parking fines. The public will now have the opportunity to provide input on the potential increase at Wednesday’s meeting of the Economic Standing Policy Committee. Council referred the matter to the Committee as a method of public engagement as no other feedback mechanism was used. The proposal changes the current three-tier fine system of $25, $30, and $50 to a flat rate of $50 while maintaining a $15 reduction if the fine is paid within seven days. The information collected at Wednesday’s meeting will be used to inform Council's decision at a later date.
- Taxi rates took centre stage at last week's meeting of the Community Safety Standing Policy Committee. Proposed changes would raise the rate for trips inside the city from 31 cents to 34 cents per one-eighth kilometre, a 9% increase, and raise the per-minute wait time fee from 75 cents to 83 cents, a 10% hike. Administration also recommended an increase in cancellation charges from $5 to $8 and a provision for taxi drivers to charge deposits, with the option to waive it for known customers. It really shouldn't be up to a group of politicians to decide prices for private industries. Instead of regulating how many taxis there are, and then government deciding the price, we should let taxis pick their own prices and allow for competition, just like we do in literally every other industry, like supermarkets, pubs, clothing stores, etc.
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