Lacombe County adopts 2010 budget

December 18, 2009

(Lacombe, Alberta) – Following the priorities set out in the County’s 2010 – 2012 Strategic Plan and the long-range capital plans, Council approved Lacombe County’s 2010 operating and capital budgets on December 17. Responding to the economic downturn, Council and Administration worked to prepare a budget that represents a 10 per cent decrease in spending as compared to the 2009 budget.

The 2010 budgets reflect reductions in a number of the operating contingencies provided in previous years’ budgets, a significant decrease in the capital budget, particularly as it relates to the purchase of new equipment, a decrease in the road paving program relative to 2009 and an approximately $650,000 reduction in the fuel budget.

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Lacombe County rescinds fire ban

November 30, 2009

(Lacombe, Alberta) – The county-wide total fire ban imposed on November 17, 2009 has been lifted for Lacombe County.

The advent of winter weather has rendered the ban unnecessary. 

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For more information contact:

Keith Boras
Manager of Environmental and Protective Services                                
Lacombe County
(403) 782-6601

Lacombe County launches new website

November 20, 2009

(Lacombe, Alberta) – As Lacombe County continues its response to expanding priorities and an increasingly diversified stakeholder group, a new and more functional website has been developed to serve Lacombe County stakeholders. The new web environment marks a dramatic improvement in the appearance, navigability and usability of the County’s website and online services.

“Development of a new site was identified as a strategic action item in the County’s Strategic Plan, which serves as Lacombe County’s blueprint for the future,” explained Lacombe County Reeve Terry Engen.

“Our previous website had been in place for a number of years, and was overdue for replacement,” said Lacombe County Commissioner Terry Hager. “This new website will allow Administration and Council to hold true to the commitments we’ve made in our Strategic Plan as we continue to build on our solid foundation while adopting more efficient corporate communications to help move us into the future.”

Along with replacement of County road signs and vehicle markings, the launch of this new website is another major step forward in completing the rollout of the County’s corporate identity, as directed by Council.  

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For more information contact:

Terry Hager
County Commissioner
Lacombe County
(403) 782-6601

Lacombe County Organizational Meeting

October 27, 2009

Lacombe County Organizational Meeting

(Lacombe, Alberta) – Lacombe County’s organizational meeting was held on Tuesday, October 27. At this meeting, Terry Engen was re-elected as Reeve of Lacombe County, and Linda Landmark was re-elected as Deputy Reeve. Mr. Engen and Mrs. Landmark were both re-elected to one-year terms in their respective positions.

Council also re-appointed members to the various boards, committees, organizations and commissions. Details on these appointments will be posted on the County website.

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For more information contact:

Terry Hager
County Commissioner
Lacombe County
(403) 782-6601

County Council Approves 2009 Budget and Tax Rates

May 5, 2009

County Council Approves 2009 Budget and Tax Rates

(Lacombe, Alberta) – The continued provision of high-quality services was a priority of Lacombe County Council when they approved the County’s 2009 tax rate bylaw and the 2009 final operating and capital budgets on April 23rd. Long-range fiscal and project planning aided Council in adopting budgets which meet current needs while maintaining the municipal tax rate at 2008 levels.

While Council approves the interim operating and capital budgets in December, the final budgets and tax rates are not set until April of the following year, once the education requisition is received from the Province. Municipal tax rates are set by aligning the total budget requirements for the year with the total assessed value of all properties in the County. The amount of property taxes levied for education purposes is determined by the Province. Separate tax rates are established for residential, farmland, and non-residential properties, as well as for machinery and equipment (See the Backgrounder on the next page for 2009 property tax rates).

Total tax revenue for municipal purposes will increase by 5.28% over 2008 due to growth in the County’s assessment base. The Lacombe Foundation, whose mission is “to provide safe and affordable housing and support, dignity and quality of life for Seniors and families in the communities of Lacombe County”, has requisitioned the County for $269,030 in operational support for 2009. A mill rate of .0428 will be added to all taxable properties in the County to fund this requisition. On a $300,000 residence this mill rate represents an additional $12.84 in property taxes.

Of the County’s total $50,105,089 operating budget, $33,074,677 is funded through property taxation, with $9.4 million of this being forwarded directly to the provincial government for education purposes. The County’s portion of the property taxes collected is used to fund the cost of services and programs provided to local residents and businesses. The 2009 capital budget of $4.54 million includes vehicle and equipment replacement for the County’s Fire, Public Works, and Agriculture departments; completion of the County’s office and shop expansion; and various community projects, including the expansion and upgrading of the Alix fire hall.

Every year Council works through the difficult task of managing resources for the growing needs of its stakeholders, in order to maintain a balance between present needs and future growth.

County Commissioner Terry Hager sums up the result this way: “The budget strikes a reasonable balance between addressing service costs and the taxes that ratepayers will face in 2009. It puts the County in a stable position to meet the growing service needs of our residents, while accommodating our current economic uncertainties.”

Tax notices will be mailed out at the end of May, with taxes due by August 31, 2009.

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For more information contact:

Tim Timmons
Manager of Corporate Services                                     
Lacombe County
(403) 782-6601

Lacombe County receives Federal funding for pedestrian bridge

October 13, 2009

Lacombe County receives Federal funding for pedestrian bridge

(Lacombe, Alberta) – Lacombe County is one step closer to seeing a pedestrian trail run through its core, as the Government of Canada announced $50,000 in funding for the development of a pedestrian bridge over the Blindman River.

The project is being supported by the Government of Canada’s $25 million investment in recreational trails, part of the Government of Canada’s Economic Action Plan. This investment will be matched by the National Trails Coalition (NTC) and Alberta TrailNet (ATN).

“This bridge is an important link in the development of a regional trail system for Central Alberta,” explained Terry Engen, Lacombe County Reeve. “When complete, the Trans Canada Trail will link cities and towns in Central Alberta with a system of rural trails through Lacombe County, Red Deer County and Ponoka County.”

The Trans Canada Trail will eventually stretch from Penhold to Ponoka, with the trail within Lacombe County extending from the Blindman River to Morningside. The bridge crossing the Blindman River will be situated between Red Deer and Blackfalds at the end of the C&E trail, just down from the rail bridge.

Lacombe County demonstrated its commitment to the project earlier in the year by donating $50,000 worth of building materials for the bridge, while the Canadian Military engineers will donate approximately $50,000 of their time and expertise to the project by installing the decking and handrails. In addition, Alberta TrailNet provided $100,000 towards the project, while Trans Canada Trail (TCT) provided $67,000.

A request for $225,000 will be coming forward in the County’s 2010 budget to construct a trail from the Blindman River to Blackfalds. This trail will provide a link from the Town of Blackfalds to the pedestrian bridge, with the goal of eventually extending the trail to create a link with the Town of Lacombe.

Work on the bridge is slated for construction for this winter, with the bridge decking expected to go on in the spring with the help of the Canadian Military. 

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 For more information contact:

Phil Lodermeier
Operations Manager
Lacombe County
(403) 782-6601