by Tristan Turner
Morinville News Correspondent
Morinville resident survey sees bump in council approval, drop in Town’s
Morinville residents offered their feedback to the Town and Council following the completion of the annual 2017 Resident Survey. The questionnaire got 688 (6.8 per cent of residents) respondents to answer 17 questions both online and through hard copies at Town hall. Questions ranged from resident satisfaction with Town programs/tax rates and communications, to Council’s performance and leadership.
Participation this year was up over four times, up from 135 last year to 688 this year, with the Town using targeted Facebook and Instagram advertisements to attract participation. The survey cost residents $907.15, not including the cost to staff time. This is up a few hundred from last year at around $600.
Town Council’s marks are up slightly across the board, putting them just above 55 per cent overall approval.
When asked if Council effectively plans for the future, residence responded with 57.06% approval (up 7.81%). On whether Council is acting in the best interests of the community, Council got a 57.65% (up 5.24%). Public interests being represented on council was the lowest, but with the largest improvement, at 54.03% (up 8.03%).
When it comes to Town services, marks for Municipal staff are mostly down across the board. Public works satisfaction took some of the largest hits here, with summer road maintenance satisfaction down from 70.45% to 58.96%, snow removal on major roadways down from 82.20% to 73.38%, and all other categories in Public Works down as well.
Every category in community services was down marginally, with residents decreasing satisfaction with indoor facilities, parks, Town-wide Events, school, senior and recreation programing, as well as Community Cultural Centre performances.
Despite satisfaction with Town services being generally down, Morinville residence rated their quality of life with a 71% approval rating, up from 64.52% last year. Residents also gave a 3% bump in saying that Morinville is a safe community to live in.
The full report, with more detailed responses and more questions, is available top access by all residents on the Town website.
Town to close unused roadway along cemetery grounds
Following a report to Council, the Town of Morinville will be closing a roadway at the northern edge of the Morinville Cemetery. The roadway is a narrow gravel pathway coming directly off 100 Street providing cemetery access for vehicles.
The road was originally set aside for road widening. Town Administration indicated that the section is not required for road widening, but is required for the cemetery.
Greg Hofmann, Morinville’s Director of Planning and Development, claimed that the roadway was developed without town approval over time, and has been in place for over half a century at the least.
Town staff claims the roadway is seldom used, and following advertising a public hearing on the subject, no objections were made in person or by correspondence to Council. No major public or private bodies with potential interests in the site made any representations to council either way.
The report was swiftly received unanimously by Council following a silent public hearing. The motion to remove the roadway was referred to Council’s next meeting for Second and Third Reading due to the need to get Alberta Transportation approval.