|Recycling awareness growing in Sask, shop local campaign discussed|
|Local Content - Local News|
|Written by Monique Massiah|
|Wednesday, 02 May 2012 21:02|
The province of Saskatchewan is growing, and hand-in-hand with a population boom comes an increase of waste heading to the landfill.
In Maple Creek, 27 people took part in a town clean-up initiative held on Earth Day, April 22. Town council reported at its April 24 meeting that two representatives from the municipality attended a recycling conference in Regina. Councillor Ellaine Hawrylak and assistant administrator Deb Machay attended the conference and got a glimpse of streamlined recycling processes in other communities across the country. The two got first-hand experience of a large-scale recycling process during a tour of the RCMP barracks. Hawrylak added that the recycling operation, which began in June 2011, has now seen a 50 per cent reduction of waste. "They said 40 per cent of the people were easy to get them to recycle," Hawrylak said. About 50 per cent found change difficult and the remaining 10 per cent were not affected. "They compost all their food," said Hawrylak. "They say all living material, which includes paper, and they use recyclable bags to take it out there (to the landfill). The scale of the operation, which serves 800 people three meals per day, was startling to Hawrylak. "They were starting their seventh compost pile when we were there," she said. Base staff may use the remaining compost material in flower beds, or donate the material. Hawrylak also noted a sentiment at the conference that attaching a monetary reward to recycling will boost participation. The adage of a speaker from British Columbia was if everything had a deposit fee attached to it, no matter what it was in order to get the money back, people would learn to recycle really quick, Hawrylak said.SAMA
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Saskatchewan Assessment Management Agency (SAMA). A recent meeting attended by Councillor Barry Elderkin revealed 2013 will be the base year for property re-evaluations. This means that the property assessments, which have a hand in determining taxes, will be based on values from 2013 instead of 2009 values. "Every four years the properties are revalued. That doesn't mean taxes have to go up, the idea is that the revenue is based on 2009 values rather than 2006," said Elderkin. Shop Local campaign The Shop Local campaign was deliberated at the council table on April 24. The campaign is an initiative prompted by the Chamber of Commerce which began in November 2011. It urges people to spend their money at local merchants rather than making long-distance travels to other communities. The theory of the program is that money spent in a community stays in the community by way of capital and providing jobs for residents. The campaign features a regular column by Chamber of Commerce President Tina Cresswell, which informs residents how everyone can help boost the local economy. Council deliberated about the effectiveness of continuing to fund the shop local campaign as the shopping season periodically lags during the year. The town, Chamber of Commerce, and Maple Creek News-Times split the $240 monthly value of the campaign three ways to the tune of $80 per month each. Cresswell noted she has received positive response to her monthly commentary piece featured in the newspaper. "I think we have seen some uptake in locals, that they are starting to really think about where they spend their money," Cresswell said. Council discussed how they would evaluate the outcome of the initiative. In return, Cresswell said a method to measure the effectiveness of the program would be addressed by the Chamber of Commerce at their next meeting. Golf tourneys Two new golf tournaments will be held at Maple Creek this summer. The Elks Club will host the Saskatchewan Elks and Royal Purple provincial mixed golf tournament on June 1-2. The Chamber of Commerce will host their inaugural golf tournament, tentatively set for June 24.
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