Lloyd Bertschi, who was in his fourth term as mayor and had previously spent two terms as a councillor, submitted his resignation in writing to Morinville’s Chief Administrative Officer (CAO)Debbie Oyarzun Nov. 13. In the letter the former mayor cited out of town and out of province business commitments as the reason for his stepping down prior to the end of his term.
Bertschi’s absences from Morinville Town Council meetings had left the Deputy Mayors the task of chairing council meetings. That role was performed for much of the time by David Pattison and more recently by Nicole Boutestine who was recently sworn in as Deputy Mayor after Pattison’s term expired.
The Municipal Government Act disqualifies a member of council if they are absent for eight consecutive weeks following the first meeting missed; however, council may grant an extension to the leave of absence at that point. The Nov. 13 meeting marked eight weeks of missed meetings for the former mayor. The last Council meeting he attended was Sept. 11. As there was less than a year until the next municipal election there was no requirement for the community to hold a by-election to replace the mayor.
Krauskopf appointed mayor of Morinville
Within a half hour of former Morinville Mayor Lloyd Bertschi’s letter of resignation being read in Council Chambers, Morinville Councillor Paul Krauskopf was appointed Morinville’s new mayor. Krauskopf’s term runs from Nov. 13 until the next municipal election Oct. 21, 2013.
Council had the option, under the Municipal Government Act (MGA), of holding a by-election to replace Bertschi or to appoint a member of Council to the post. Councillors Boddez and Pattison voted in favour of having a mayoral by-election; Councillors Paul Krauskopf and Lisa Holmes joined Deputy Mayor Nicole Boutestein in opposing the idea. In the world of municipal government a tied vote on a motion results in a defeated motion.
Lilian and Gibb Boddez pose for a photo in The Morinville News offices Wednesday afternoon. Mrs. Boddez was one of 112 Albertans to receive the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal Wednesday in Edmonton. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Morinville volunteer recognized with Diamond Jubilee Medal
Long-time volunteer Lillian Boddez got to rub elbows with Premier Alison Redford and The Honourable Donald S. Ethell, Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Nov. 14. Boddez, a lifelong resident of Morinville, was one of more than 100 Albertans presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in a special ceremony held in Edmonton. The medal honours Her Majesty’s service to Canada and recognizes significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.
Morinville Community Library cuts its ribbon
The Morinville Community Library had its official grand opening and logo unveiling Nov. 25. Approximately 100 board members, staff, volunteers, patrons, sponsors and dignitaries came out for the event. From left: Darrell Knapp of Alliance Pipeline, Larry Tiedemann Northern Lights Library System Board Chair, Immediate Past Library Board Chair Noreen Radford, Library Manager Isabelle Cramp, Library founding board member Lil Boddez, Ms. Jacquie Fenske, MLA for Fort Saskatchewan – Vegreville, and Mayor Paul Krauskopf cut the ceremonial ribbon. – Lucie Roy Photo
The day the circus came to town
There were no elephants or tigers the Circus Montreal performance Nov. 24, just an immigrant named Alfonso, better known as entertainer Aytahn Ross. The multi-talented performer put on two shows at the Cultural Centre during the Light Up the Night Festival Saturday as well as two workshops to demonstrate some of his talents. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Final figures on Town Hall renovations released
Council was given the final price tag on the St. Germain Place renovations at the Nov. 27 meeting of Council. Construction costs, architectural and management fees, and other indirect costs totalled $4,222,647,26. That amount is $687,647,26 more than had been approved prior to Apr. 24 when Council agreed to increase funding for the project to $4.2 million.
Council had held its nose and voted 5-1 in favour of reallocating grant monies to pay for Civic Place renovations in April, but had previously hit the roof Feb. 28 when representatives from ONPA Architects and Synergy Projects Ltd. first delivered the news project costs had escalated approximately $800,000 but would not exceed $4 million.
Final construction costs for the Town Hall and Morinville Community Library space came in at a final price tag of $3,966,763,99, slightly less than the $4 million Council had been assured would be the upper limit. The number did not include the architectural and management fees paid to ONPA Architects, which accounted for another $210,388,35 of the final price tag. Other indirect costs tallied to $45,494.92 and included moving costs, locksmith fees and Order of Magnitude costs.
Claude Valcourt, Morinville’s Director of Public Works, told Council the final cost of construction on the project was $234 per square foot, considerably less than the $400 to $600 per square foot he anticipated building a new facility would have been.