The Town of Stettler has seen a significant increase in the price of water treatment chemicals over the last year, council heard during their Dec. 6 meeting.
Typically averaging $160,000 per year, with inflation and the cost of transportation causing everything to jump in cost for 2022 the budget ended up around $224,000.
As the higher prices are not expected to decrease significantly, administration has adjusted the 2023 water treatment chemical budget to $192,500.
The Town of Stettler uses 16 different chemicals from four different suppliers in its water treatment process, most which have increased by 25 to 50 per cent in cost over the last year.
As part of the budgeting process every year, the four suppliers are required to bid their prices on the different chemicals used so that the town can get the best price, though there is a stipulation in the contract that if the supplier cost goes up they can pass it on to the town.
In a motion by Coun. Scott Pfeiffer, Cleartech was awarded eight of 13 chemicals it bid on, while Klearwater was awarded all five of its tenders. Brenntag was awarded the the contract to supply two of four chemicals in bid on, and Chemtrade, the sole supplier of one chemical, received the one contract.
Bad debt write-off
Stettler council has agreed to write off 13 utilities accounts as bad debts.
Under current Town of Stettler policies, any unpaid accounts over $300 must come to council to be written off, while those under $300 can be written off at the discretion of the assistant chief administrative officer.
The 13 accounts total just under $8,000, a significant improvement over the 25 accounts and nearly $22,000 written off in 2021.
According to the request for council decision, 15 accounts were under the $300 mark totalling just over $1,900, and 36 inactive accounts with credits on them were expenses for a total of just under $1,800.
In total, just under $8,000 was written off, representing around 0.3 per cent of 2022 revenues.
Stettler Town and Country Museum
Stettler Town and Country Museum submitted their 2023 budget to council via the Dec. 6 agenda package instead of coming to present to council.
For 2023, the Stettler Town and Country Museum is projecting $120,500 in revenue versus $188,700 in expenses with a $68,000 deficit.
However, it was noted during the council meeting that no projected fundraising projects are included in the revenue projection, just a variety of grants, services such as rentals, and memberships and admissions.
The request for council decision noted that the museum had projected deficits in 2020, 2021, and 2022 but went on to make some profit in each of those years once the fundraising was accounted for.
Since 2018 the Town and Country Museum has received $34,000 per year from the town, however in 2023 the organization requested a subtle increase to $35,000.
“With everything they do, asking for $1,000 increase, I don’t have a problem with it,” said Mayor Sean Nolls.
The increase was passed in a motion by Travis Randell.