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Civic deficit, snow operations on Saskatoon city council agenda – Saskatoon

SASKATOON – Saskatoon city council meets Monday evening to discuss year-end financial results, snow program operations and a bylaw for loud vehicles.

Up for discussion is a preliminary civic financial report for 2013 indicating a net unadjusted deficit of $3.3 million.

Councillors will be asked to approve a $1-million transfer from the fiscal stabilization reserve to stabilize the deficit.

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The snow removal and ice management program posted a $4.6 million deficit. This could be partially reduced using the program’s stabilization reserve and the weather reserve, if council approves.

Information will also be received telling council how the city’s snow and ice operations dealt with the winter of 2013-14.

According to the city, improved strategies and procedures yielded significant successes.

There was slightly above average snowfall from December to February. A total of 22,000 loads of snow were removed from streets during the season.

Work on the snow grading program was postponed in January due to extremely cold temperatures. Administration subsequently shifted the work to focus on snow removal.

Also on the agenda is a recommendation from administration to change a noise bylaw to make it an offence to operate a vehicle in a manner that disturbs the public’s ears.

The city solicitor will be asked to prepare a bylaw amendment which would include a specific provision for motorcycle decibel levels.

Saskatoon is also considering revamping speed zones for motorists, specifically on streets surrounding kids’ playgrounds.

Council will see if it wants pursue “Child at Play Speed Zones” with a comprehensive study for $50,000.

Council will also be asked to renew the building lease for the Saskatoon Farmers’ Market. If approved, the new lease will expire on Nov. 30, 2018.

Both parties agree on an annual rent of $10; however, the farmers’ market is responsible for all operating costs, utilities and property taxes.