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June 25, 2017
May 25, 2017

Edmonton Headlines: Friday, May 26, 2017

Lots of new things

Written by Jeff Samsonow

 

Edmonton could be in line for some new rules for garage and garden suites. Overall, this is good news, since the more places we can build homes, especially smaller and more affordable ones, the better we can combat sprawl of our city. There’s still time to let your councillor know how you feel about the rules before they are officially passed (or changed and then approved).

Edmonton could be in for one more MLA, if the recommendations of the electorial boundary commission are accepted by the Alberta Legislature. Calgary would also get an extra MLA, as ridings are adjusted to be more equal when it comes to population. This one still has another round of public consultation before being finalized.

Fresh and clean water is coming to Enoch as part of the federal government’s promise to end boil water advisories on First Nations across Canada.

I haven’t been paying enough attention to news from other cities and provinces but it feels like Edmonton and Alberta are trying to jump out in front of the legalization of marijuana, at least when it comes to the business side of things.

The province’s auditor general took a bit of a different approach for a new report on our healthcare system. It’s not an audit exactly, but a proposal to make the system more efficient and provide better outcomes for patients, based on recommendations from years of other audits and reports. The biggest piece of this would be creating more health teams around a patient, so you’d have more expert advice and more options on how to stay and get healthy.

Drug courts could help with the opioid crisis, so they are definitely something that could use an infusion of money from the provincial and federal governments. It could help clear up some of those court system delays we keep hearing about too.

Cleanup continues after that wind storm knocked around about 1,000 trees. And more than 20,000 people in the city lost power at some point. What a day that was!


Longreads are good reads

Alright, while not all of the assembled stories we’re about to link you to are longreads, taken together they form an excellent big picture look at two issues in Edmonton.

Online lies

CBC Edmonton’s got quite the story involving a fake profile of a woman which has men showing up to her home looking for sex. The good news from this, if it can be called that, is that Edmonton Police report laying charges in other investigations of a similar nature this year. We need to keep seeing police charge people for online harassment and bullying, because it’s just as damaging as something happening face-to-face.

Speaking of online harrassment and targeted campaigns, the CBC also has a story on how it appears many Alberta conservatives may not be who they claim to be online. This isn’t the first time this kind of thing has come to light, as there was a seemingly invented Wildrose supporter at the University of Calgary.

Ending homelessness in Edmonton

Over at the Edmonton Journal, and already looking toward the election’s big issues, city hall reporter Elise Stolte has a series on housing and homelessness. This is an issue that impacts everyone, whether directly or through the many costs to our wider community. Edmonton has made some headway on ending homelessness, and new money from higher levels of government helps more, but there’s got to be continuing efforts to really get everyone we can off the streets.

The series also includes looks at Hope Terrace and Canora Place, two of our success stories and their struggles and goals.

One of the side stories looks at the idea of simply paying to place people in our many vacant apartments. And there could be lessons from Calgary on building more affordable and supportive housing, both in terms of zoning requirements and the discussions that happen with neighbours.


Public engagement

The Community and Public Services Committee meets today, beginning at 9:30 a.m. You can see the agenda online. The meeting will also stream live from the River Valley Room.

On Saturday, the City’s public engagement drop-in sessions continue, at the Commonwealth Community Recreation Centre, 1-4 p.m.

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