2018 Annual Report to the Community

Page 1


Annual Report


Message from the CAO As I reflect on 2018, it was another busy year for the Town of Olds as the community continues to grow! Investors are continually looking at Olds as a place to do business, and there was a marked increase in development permits, especially in our Industrial Park area as we have seen this area expand at a rapid pace. Sundial Growers opened its new medicinal cannabis facility and began production, which in turn will create jobs and spin-off opportunities for the Olds region.

Reclamation of the old wastewater plant site is nearing completion, which will make this land available in the future for the Town of Olds Operations Center.

Maintenance and replacement continues on roads, fire hydrants, sidewalks and trails, Town of Olds Fire Chief Justin Andrew, has stressed the to ensure need to plan for the future while looking at ways to manage commurisk through fire prevention measures. Over the past year nity the number of inspections was increased to ensure the safe- safety. ty of businesses and residents are the Town’s top priority. I would like

Rotary Athletic Park of Olds is in the developmental stag- to extend thanks es and the community has rallied behind the park by raising and appreciation to my over $900,000 in donations. staff for their hard work and Dedicated town staff continue to make Olds a beautiful dedication in our efforts to make community to visit and live in and this can be seen by the the Town of Olds a great place to cleanliness and fabulous arrangements of flowers, planters, live, work and play. shrubs and trees throughout the community.

- Michael Merritt

Town welcomes New RCMP Sergeant & Fire Chief The Town of Olds welcomes Sgt. Jim MacDonald as the Detachment Commander for the Olds RCMP. Sergeant MacDonald grew up on Canada’s east coast in his hometown of Antigonish, Nova Scotia. He joined the RCMP in 1996 and spent his first 10 years policing at Vermilion, Westaskiwin, and Maskwacis. Jim was later promoted to instruct the Applied Police Sciences at the RCMP training academy in Regina. Prior to his appointment in Olds, MacDonald served in Grande Prairie as a Watch Commander as well as on the Management Team S/Sgt. Jim MacDonald where he was in charge of the detachment’s operational support sections. MacDonald expects to solicit input from the community to establish policing goals and priorities, while his personal priorities include traffic safety, reduction of property crime and the targeting of prolific and habitual offenders. MacDonald and his wife Darla love being part of the community of Olds and the surrounding area.

Town of Olds CAO, Michael Merritt, was pleased to announce the appointment of the new Fire Chief ,Justin Andrew. Justin was born and raised in Olds and has been a member of the Olds Fire Department since 1996. Justin was the department’s Training Officer for the past nine years and has acted as Safety Codes Officer for the past year. Justin had been working as a Firefighter/Paramedic with Red Deer Emergency Services (RDES) for the City of Red Deer since 2002. Justin is a registered Paramedic Fire Chief Justin Andrew that has risen through the ranks at RDES including an 8-month special assignment as an Assistant Deputy Chief. Justin played an integral role in the fundraising and construction of the Fire Training Grounds in Olds. When he isn’t working or teaching fire courses, Justin commits his time to his wife, Monica and their 3 children, and of course, the Olds community!


Message from Mayor Muzychka

I am pleased to present the 2018 Annual Report to the Community. The annual report highlights some of our challenges, successes and achievements over the last year. While this report might be all about what happened in 2018, it also represents the culmination of years of passion, progress and community commitment to making our town extraordinary.

igation, and ensuring the information they were looking for was up-to-date and readily available. As always, we are constantly creating connections and it is a privilege for Council to serve our community, and we look forward to engaging with you. - Michael Muzychka

Construction began on the new Rotary Athletic Park of Olds, along with a cemetery expansion and planting of new trees. Each of these projects contributes to the fabric of the overall parks and trail system that our citizens and visitors use daily and take pride in. The Canadian legalization of cannabis took place in 2018, and much time was spent creating and passing bylaws to ensure regulations were ready and in place. Work began on a new website, and we approached citizens to take part in two community engagement groups that would influence an update to the website, focusing on ease of nav-

2017-2021 Council Back row left to right: Councillor Mary Jane Harper, Councillor Wade Bearchell, Councillor Debbie Bennett, Councillor Mary Anne Overwater. Front row left to right: Councillor Heather Ryan, Mayor Michael Muzychka, and Councillor Wanda Blatz.

Municipal Development Plan Under Review Town of Olds Council and Administration are working on the Municipal Development Plan (MDP). The MDP is a document that guides and directs future growth and development in the Town of Olds.

The MDP is put in place to guide and direct all future development within the town, to ensure that it is orderly, economical, beneficial, and balances the environmental, social and economic needs of the community.

The Municipal Development plan went through public consultation and input as part of the process.

The Municipal Development plan was last updated in 2006-2007. 3

Olds Fire Department The Fire Services Team for the Town of Olds reports to the Office of the CAO and consists of a full-time Fire Chief, Administrative Assistant, Fire Prevention Officer, contracted Director of Emergency Management and 40 paid on-call firefighters. The primary focus of the department is to provide residents and businesses in the Town of Olds community with Fire Protection, rescue services, environmental protection, fire prevention services, and with Alberta Health Services - medical co-response. In 2018, the Olds Fire Department responded to 395 incidents varying among motor vehicle collisions (MVC), fires and medical responses.

Wednesday evenings throughout the year are regular training nights with the exception of the summer months, when training is every other Wednesday. Theoretical training is facilitated in the training room located at the Fire Hall, while practical training frequently occurs at the fire training grounds located off 70th street just north of the former solid waste transfer site. This training facility is also used by surrounding fire departments throughout Mountain View County. Some of the training the Olds Fire Department members received last year included: • International Academy for Professional Driving (IAPD) Fire/EMS Emergency Vehicle Operation • Incident Command System (ICS) 1-100 • NFPA 1041 Level 1 Fire Instruction • Blue Card Command

Every year in October, the Olds Fire Department hosts a Fire Prevention Open House for the residents of Olds and surrounding areas. They also offer tours of the Fire Hall to local students. When the firefighters aren’t at their primary occupations or with their families, they can be seen volunteering their time in the community and other causes/events such as the Annual Terry Fox Run, Wellspring Firefighter Stair Climb Challenge, and other various events. The Olds Fire Department Bucket Challenge supported the Mountain View Food Bank, Chinook Arch Victims Services and Olds & District Christmas Angels by raising $14,151.00 and 1200 lbs of food. 4

URBAN INCIDENTS - 228 Alarm No Fire Miscellaneous

Fire - Rubbish/grass fire


Fire - Investigation Rescue

Alarm No Fire Detector Activated

Motor Vehicle Collision

Medical First Response

Public Service Gas Leak - Detector Public Hazard

Medical Assist

RURAL INCIDENTS - 164 Public Service

Alarm No Fire - Detector Activated (5)


Fire - Rubbish/grass fire Medical Assist Fire - Investigation

Controlled Burn

Medical First Response

Mutual Aid Request

Motor Vehicle Collision


Emergency Management Training Local municipal government plays a central role in Emergency Management. With anticipated amendments to the provincial Emergency Management Act in the fall of 2018, the Town of Olds proactively conducted a review of its Emergency Response Program to ensure the Town would meet new legislative requirements. As part of the review, the Mountain View Regional Emergency Response Plan was reviewed and updated. The Town of Olds created a site specific Emergency Response Plan to ensure mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery plans are current and comprehensive to support the Town in the event of a disaster. This included a risk assessment of hazards throughout the Town to ensure there are adequate resources to deal with any disaster, either through the use of the Town’s staff and equipment, contracted agencies or mutual aid partners. The Town’s Emergency Operations Center was reconfigured and the Alberta First Responder Radio Communications System (AFRCS) was acquired to support Fire, Municipal Enforcement and Emergency Response efforts. Council members and staff received training throughout the year from the province. Through the support of the Alberta Emergency Management Agency grant, a table-top and full scale exercise are scheduled for 2020.


Economic Development Economic Growth in Olds

The Town of Olds will continue to show growth in the South East Industrial Area which encompasses approximately 200+ acres of prime opportunity for Bio-Medical production, commercial food supply, and Eco-Industrial business investment, which compliment the production and manufacturing facilities that currently exist. The Town of Olds monitors economic growth by Industrial, Commercial and Residential housing throughout the Central Alberta Region. The Town works closely with many partner organizations such the Olds Institute for Community & Regional Development (OICRD), the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA), Rural Municipalities of Alberta (formerly known as AAMD&C); Central Alberta Economic Partnership (CAEP); Access Prosperity; Alberta Innovates; Alberta Agriculture; Olds Chamber of Commerce; as well as Economic Developers Alberta (EDA).

Brownfield Redevelopment

A Brownfield site is any previously developed land that is not currently in use. Brownfield redevelopment can provide many benefits to a community including an increased tax base, creation of new jobs, utilization of existing infrastructure, and, in some cases, the removal of contaminants (e.g. old gas station sites, etc.) will help protect health and the environment. Town of Olds Presentations: Federation of Canadian Municipalities, Olds Brownfield Redevelopment. Kingston, Ontario - June 2018 - 50 Attendees.

Olds College Population Impact: 3,800 Enrollment (including Part-Time Students) Trading Area Population: 1.2 million within 1 hour drive of Olds.

Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, Mayor’s Caucus, Growth, Development, Redevelopment held in Edmonton, Alberta - March 2018 - 320 Attendees.

Number of Businesses: 807 (2018)

Special Projects: Southern Alberta Energy from Waste Association, 35 Counties & Communities. Goals: Future Solid Waste Management leading to Energy Production.

Target Growth Sectors: Bio-Industrial, Transportation and Logistics, Manufacturing, Warehousing and Aviation. Land Available: 312.5 Industrial Acres

Internet Availability: Broadband Fibre Optics, symetrical system with speeds up to 1,000 megabits/second.

2018 Industrial Land Sales: 148 Acres

October 2018 7

Operational Services Advocacy Efforts

Town of Olds Council met with members from the Ministry of Transportation where road safety was the top priority throughout discussions. Priority topics included: • A crosswalk at the intersection of Highway 2A and 54 Street (Auction Mart and Aquatic Centre corner) • Flashing/turning lights at Highway 27 & 57 Avenue • Preliminary discussions regarding lights at the Olds High School entrance • Extention and widening of the northbound merging lane off QE II onto Highway 27

Transportation Projects Completed

Road Rehabilitation Projects

• Advance green turning signals were installed in 2018 at the intersection of 57 Avenue and Highway 27.

Regular road rehabilitation continues to be a priority each year with the Town investing approximately $2.5 million annually. These funds come from Federal, Provincial and Municipal Government. 2018 projects included:

• Two sets of flashing Crosswalk Lights were approved and installed at the intersections of Highway 2A & 54 Street and Highway 27 and 48 Avenue.

• 44 Street from 50 Avenue to 51 Avenue saw a storm line replacement, water line looping and new road surface.

• Construction of Rotary Athletic Park of Olds began in August 2018 and the playfields are slated to be completed and open in spring of 2020.

• 57 Avenue from Highway 27 to north of the Hospital received a complete asphalt overlay.

• The Town was granted permission from Alberta Environment and Parks to move forward with the reclamation of the former Wastewater Treatment Plant site. The majority of the buildings were removed and dirt work reclamation was completed prior to winter setting in. 2019 will see the relocation of the Fire Training Center, and the site will be readied for the future Operations Center.

• Shannon Drive from 57 Avenue received new sewer lines, road base and asphalt replacement. • 70 Avenue North of Highway 27 (800 metres) was rebuilt and paved to support the increased traffic load once the new sports fields at Rotary Athletic Park are open. The Town of Olds maintains: Roads 104.6 km Storm Water Lines 49.8 km Water Lines 83.4 km Sewer Lines 75.2 km

• Fire Hydrant replacements were completed in 2018 in a move to ensure the consistency of all fittings throughout Olds. Only 5 replacements remain on Olds College lands.


New Curling Rink Chiller

A new chiller was purchased for the curling rink after it was discovered that the old chiller was leaking. This caused a delay in the opening of the curling season. The chiller is a different style from the old one. A second chiller will be replaced in 2019 for the Sportsplex ice surfaces.

Weed Control

The Town of Olds continues to spray to control dandelions within town greenspaces and parks. This is done both spring and fall as weather allows.

Water Leaks

Operational Services worked to identify unaccounted water through leak detection systems and repair of approximately 40 water lines. Preliminary reviews indicate repairs have reduced water loss from 39% to approximately 20%. Monitoring will continue on an ongoing basis.

Tree Inventory

Waste Connections of Canada Contract

Olds has a three week rotational compost, garbage and recycling curbside pickup program. This program is being closely monitored by other communities in Alberta to increase recycling and compost in the province and reduce garbage.

Parks & Greenspaces

A tree inventory has been completed and there are currently 3,494 trees within Olds parks and greenspaces. In 2018, 35 Columnar Aspens were planted to replace the 35 that were vandalized. 110 trees were planted in the new section of the Olds Cemetery. • 1467 Evergreen trees • 2027 Deciduous trees

2018 Park Projects

• A new tree bed was planted on Highway 27 west with 5 trees by the UFA • Cornerstone landscaping was completed • Centennial Park Gazebo was repainted • Town Municipal Office was sodded where old spruce trees were removed due to disease

Flowers & Hanging Baskets

Town staff look after 18 flower beds, 70 hanging baskets, 90 planters and 40 wooden barrels. Locations of flower beds can be found at the following locations: • Town Municipal Office • 50 Avenue & 46 Street (Herb Samis Garden) • O.R. Hedges Ball Diamonds • O.R. Hedges Campground • Neil Leatherdale Park • North, South & West entrances to Olds • Olds Cemetery on 2A 9

Power Outage Causes Water Pump Station Fires - July 30, 2018 On Monday, July 30, 2018 at approximately 7:50 pm the Olds Fire Department was dispatched to a report of smoke coming from a Town infrastructure building at 4502 46 Avenue. There was a major storm taking place at the time and the situation resulted from the electrical activity as a result of that storm. Upon arrival, crews found that one of the Diesel fire pumps that run during power outages or in high demand when fire hydrants are in use, had failed and ignited. Approximately 20 minutes later Town Staff identified that the South station pump engine had also failed and was actively burning. Fire Crews redeployed and extinguished the fire quickly but the building and pumps experienced significant damage due to fire. Water service was disrupted to the entire Town while the power was out, but temporary water service was restored quickly through quick response by Utilities staff and local contractors. Town of Olds Emergency Management took pre-emptive action to notify facilities such as the hospital and seniors lodges. The situation was closely monitored by the Director of Emergency Management. Fortis Alberta worked through the night restoring power and focussed on the Town of Olds, then moved outward to the rural areas as power was out over a large area. At approximately 2:00 a.m. the South Pump Station had basic power and one electric pump was able to run. The first Pump Station suffered smoke damage and once power was restored was able to function. It took 9 months before all equipment and repairs were completed. An action plan is in place to avoid future incidents.

2018 BUILDING PERMIT STATISTICS - Town of Olds Residential

Detached Dwelling

# Jan Feb Mar Apr Ma Jun Jul Au Sep Oct Nov Dec

Duplex Value Units


Multi-Unit Value Units



2 1 0 2 2 1 0 1 2 2 0 2

$ $

675,000 400,000 0 $ 655,000 $ 574,500 $ 310,000 0 $ 392,000 $ 565,000 $ 669,000 0 $ 469,000

0 0 0 0 2 0 4 0 0 1 2 0

0 0 0 0 4 0 4 0 0 2 2 0

0 0 0 0 $ 855,000 0 $1,080,000 0 0 $ 460,000 $ 400,000 0

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0


$ 4,709,500







Acc. Bldg/Other # Value 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

4 2 2 3 3 4 8 7 2 5 2 1




Commercial #




$ 121,000 $ 65,000 $ 15,000 $ 49,600 $ 16,000 $ 77,000 $ 55,000 $ 46,120 $ 14,500 $ 599,000 $ 2,800 $ 15,000

2 2 0 1 5 4 2 4 0 2 5 2

$ $

14,600 21,000 0 $ 5,000 $ 415,000 $ 624,100 $ 325,000 $ 1,030,000 0 $ 21,500 $ 400,000 $ 73,000

0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 1 2




$ 2,929,200





0 0 13,400,000 0 $ 85,000 0 0 0 $ 300,000 0 $3,000,000 $2,155,000

0 0 0 0 0 2 1 1 0 0 0 0







0 0 0 0 $ 625,000 $ 273,700 $ 60,000 0 0 0 0

8 5 3 6 13 11 15 13 7 10 10 7

$ 810,600 $ 486,000 $ 13,415,000 $ 709,600 $ 1,945,500 $ 1,636,100 $ 1,733,700 $ 1,528,120 $ 879,500 $ 1,749,500 $ 3,802,800 $ 2,712,000






2017 BUILDING PERMIT STATISTICS - Town of Olds Residential Detached




Acc. Bldg/Other





Financial Services How do Municipalities Generate Revenue? Revenue is generated through taxation, sales and user fees, franchise fees, government grants, licenses and permits, penalties, costs and fines and investment income.

Property Taxes 47%

As can be seen in the graph to the right, property taxes are the main source of revenue for the Town of Olds, followed closely by sales and user fees. Included in sales and user fees are things like water, wastewater and solid waste fees as well as revenue earned at the Aquatic Centre and Sportsplex. Property taxes make up 47% of the total revenue received by the Town of Olds. Looking at the entire budget as a whole, (including all revenue sources) Utilities are by far the highest expense with recreation, culture, roads and protective services rounding out the top 4. The Town of Olds operates the water, wastewater, solid waste and storm water systems on a user-pay model. There is no contribution from municipal tax revenue to provide these services.

2018 Budget Talks Engagement Through the summer of 2018, the Town held an online public budget consultation survey. This online tool was based on citizens balancing the budget, allocating funds to departments/areas that they would like to see an increase or a decrease to the current level of service. While there were only 80 respondents to this survey, valuable data was collected and taken into consideration for the 2019 budget. The graph below shows the results when respondents were asked if they would keep the current funding the same, increase funding or decrease funding. As can be seen from the data to the right, most respondents were happy with the current level of funding.


2018 Property Tax and Assessment Stats The total number of taxable properties increased to 4162 in 2018 up from 4141 in 2017. The assessed value of the average single family home for 2018 was $317,275, down slightly from $317,310 in 2017. The total taxable assessed property value increased from $1,421,808,590 (2017) to $1,431,991,280 (2018).

Recreation and Culture 25%

As can be seen in the graph to the right, Recreation and Culture followed closely by Roads have the biggest tax requirements in the Town of Olds. Included in recreation and culture are; the Aquatic Centre, the Sportsplex, Parks and trails, Sportsfields, Library, Museum and Heritage.

Where Do Your Tax Dollars Go?

Approximately 68% of your property taxes go to the Town of Olds; 30% is collected on behalf of the Province of Alberta and designated for education, and the remaining 2% is collected on behalf of Mountain View Seniors Housing. The graph below highlights in dollars where your (the average residential

home) tax dollars are allocated. For more information on what is included in each of the groupings of departments please visit our website. At www.olds.ca located under the public engagement section is the What we heard: ‘A report to the Community – 2018 Budget Public Consultation’.


Community Services 2018 Events Great Neighbours Program 2018 introduced the first year of the Great Neighbours Program. It jumpstarted block parties that were established as a method to create a stronger sense of community by gathering neighbours and providing an events trailer to support BBQs and other outdoor events & entertainment. Kindness Matters The students of Deer Meadow School fundraised money and with a contribution of funds from the Town of Olds Council, they were able to design and commission a legacy bench in honour of kindness and as a memorial to a classmate. Rotary Athletic Park of Olds Mural The Town worked in coordination with Renu Mathew, local High School Arts teacher, to develop a plan for creating a temporary mural that students would paint to advertise the upcoming Rotary Athletic Park of Olds, currently under construction in the Northwest corner of Olds. Nu2U Grants Program This unique little thrift store is run in for the Town of Olds by a store manager along with a group of hard working and enthusiastic volunteers. All proceeds from the store are given back to the community of Olds through grant funding to groups who apply and meet criteria. 18th Annual Volunteer Appreciation Volunteers are the heart of the Olds community, and once a year we get together to celebrate them and their achievements! 2018 marked the 18th Annual Volunteer Appreciation event, where volunteers are invited to dinner and entertainment, hosted by the Town of Olds. National Indigenous Peoples Day The Town works with a dedicated group of volunteers and organizations annually to host National Indigenous Peoples Day to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Metis and Inuit peoples. 13

Community Services 2018 Events Seniors Week Walking Tour In collaboration with the Olds College Community Learning Campus, Mary Hays raised heritage awareness by storytelling with the walking tour initiative ‘Our Legacy, Our Story’ over Seniors Week. CP Holiday Train The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train visited Olds on Tuesday, December 11 to raise money, food and awareness for food banks and hunger issues across Canada. The Holiday train is about 1,000 feet in length with 14 rail cars decorated with LED lights and a modified boxcar stage for performers. Olds Fashioned Christmas The Olds Fashioned Christmas event celebrated its 25th Anniversary this year. The event was extremely well attended, with events taking place both inside and outside the Cow Palace, and outside in Centennial Park. The annual Light Up Parade continues to be a crowd favourite! Pick Up Garbage (P.U.G.) Day The Olds Lions Club held its 4th Annual PUG Day in May 2018. Five schools (approx. 1,300 students) participated and residents picked up loose garbage along public roads, green spaces and neighbourhoods. The Lions organized the cleanup, working with the Town to make Olds beautiful. Olds Citizens on Patrol (C.O.P.) C.O.P. is a group of volunteers who participate in community-based crime prevention, observation and reporting suspicious activities while on patrol. Volunteers work closely with the RCMP and complete mandatory training in surveillance and observation techniques, note taking, and safe patrol practices.


Engagement is about gathering ideas, opinions, and input

an online public Budget Consultation survey.

Budget Have Your Say! Please take a few minutes to use this to give policy Talks! makers a variety of perspectives and concerns Budget Talks - Have Your Say was an online tool based on of the people who could potentially be impacted. The goal interactive budget tool to show us ishow you would like allocating your tax citizens balancing the budget, fundsdollars to departments not to produce an absolute consensus, but to ensure that deci- and areas where they would like to see an increase or deinvested. We value your input and tolook forward to hearing from you sion-making is well informed and offers residents the chance crease in the current level of service provided by the Town. contribute their ideas knowledge tolevels policy development. In Valuable regarding theandservice you would likedata to was seecollected maintained, and taken into enhanced consideration for 2018 there were several key engagement processes including the 2019 Budget. or reduced. This year there are 4 key areas of interest for the 2020 budget: Fire Services, Roads, Sportsplex and the beautification of Olds. Please head to www.olds.ca to share your thoughts. Smart Cities The survey will be reviewed by Administration and Council to guide Olds was the first town in its region to offer gigabit Interbudget deliberations for 2020. net speeds through its community-owned and operated FiLegalization of Cannabis

bre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network, O-NET. In 2018 Olds was This surveyofwill remain open until October 14th, 2019. The Legalization Cannabis survey was launched in June listed as one of the top 21 communities in the world by ICF’s 2018 and ran through to the end of August.

Annual Intelligent Community Forum Awards. 1024 surveys were received. Feedback was presented to Public input was needed to identify where our biggest opCouncil and the information provided Council a great deal of portunities are. A workshop was hosted in conjunction with assistance in developing the Bylaws on cannabis retail sales the Olds Institute in January. Though the Town’s application and public consumption. to Infrastructure Canada was not successful, the process of A full report on what was heard is available at: applying for the national grant competition provided valuable https://www.olds.ca/discover-olds/public-engagement. information for future planning. 1

Minister of Infrastructure Sandra Jansen Toured Olds

Olds Town Council and staff were thrilled to host Sandra Jansen, Minister of Infrastructure as she took time out of her busy schedule to tour Olds. Included in the tour was community-owned O-NET and its facilities, as well as the future site of the Rotary Athletic Park of Olds and the future medical Cannabis operations. Pictured from left to right are: Mayor Michael Muzychka, Sandra Jansen and Chris Thompson, O-NET.


4512 46 Street Olds, Alberta T4H 1R5 Phone 403.556.6981 Fax 403.556.6537 Email communications@olds.ca www.olds.ca


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