Moose Jaw – Phase 1 of the City’s Cast Iron Water Main Replacement Project is progressing well since its start last month. The program will be accelerating over the remainder of the construction season with the contractor now having two crews working on the project. Four streets are currently actively involved in the project: 8th Avenue NW – Cast iron water main has been replaced. Asphalt work has begun and pavement will be completed soon. 9th Avenue NW (Edmonton to Francis Streets) – Cast iron water main has been replaced. Asphalt work will begin soon. 4th Avenue (Athabasca to Hochelaga Streets) – Cast iron water main has been replaced. Service connection replacement will continue this week. Ominica Street (6th to 8th Avenues) – Temporary water is scheduled to begin next week. Affected residents will be notified by the contractor via delivered notices to their properties. Residents involved in this program receiving temporary water services will receive a credit on an upcoming water bill reflecting the time period they were on temporary service. Contractor site visits with Phase 1 property owners who have submitted their agreements are being scheduled throughout the summer. These contractor site visits will confirm current service connections and provide estimates for work chosen. For additional information on the Cast iron Water main Replacement program please visit the FAQ at http://www.moosejaw.ca/cast-iron-water-mains/faq . Safety As with all projects, safety comes first. City Engineering reminds residents and children to stay a safe distance from equipment and to slow down when passing crews. Pedestrians and drivers are asked to obey barricades and detour signs to ensure safety of workers in the area.
Due to a paving project, transit service between 4th and 9th Avenue on Coteau Street will be temporarily diverted to Lillooet Street, effective immediately. Passengers are urged to use the bus stops at 5th Avenue and 10th Avenue on Coteau Street. Regular service will resume to these stops next week. Moose Jaw Transit regrets any inconvenience this may cause its passengers.
Drivers are asked to be aware of a sinkhole forming under the asphalt at Manitoba and 2nd Avenue East this afternoon. City crews have barricaded the area and remind drivers and pedestrians to respect the barricades and signage placed for public safety. Excavation of the area will begin tomorrow. The cause of the sinkhole has yet to be determined. Anyone with concerns can call the City Engineering department at 694-4448.
MOOSE JAW – Moose Jaw has been listed as #9 on Canada’s top 25 Best Places for Business in 2016, according to ProfitGuide.com. ProfitGuide.com’s Best Places for Business survey highlights the Canadian cities that strike an optimal balance between prosperous markets, reasonable costs and business-friendly taxation and regulation. Using a combination of public and proprietary market data and survey responses from some 60 municipalities with populations of 15,000 or more, they awarded each city scores on factors such as the cost of office space, the speed of processing a building permit and the percentage of residents holding a university degree. Moose Jaw also ranked #10 on Canada’s Top 10 Most Business-Friendly Places for 2016. The list highlights the cities and districts that go the extra mile to make businesses feel appreciated. They have the lowest property tax mill rates, the fastest processing times for building permits, the most affordable and hassle-free business licensing and more. “We are pleased that the world is being exposed to what Moose Jaw has to offer. Our economic development and planning department, along with our local tourism organization, Chamber of Commerce and local businesses work hard to make our city an inviting place to live, work, learn and invest in – it’s the Moose Jaw advantage,” commented Mayor Deb Higgins. The complete list can be found at: http://www.profitguide.com/manage-grow/strategy-operations/canadas-best-places-for-business-2016-most-business-friendly-104979
The north section of Happy Valley Park remains closed to the public as construction crews continue work at the site. The public will be advised when that section is reopened. The City appreciates the cooperation of residents in respecting the fencing and signage placed in the area for construction safety reasons. Anyone with concerns can call the City Engineering department at 694-4448.
The City of Moose Jaw formalized a collective agreement yesterday with the union representing the Moose Jaw Transit workers – Unifor Local 101, Lodge 204, Unit 4187. “We are pleased to have this agreement signed and look forward to continuing our positive relationship with Unifor and its members,” stated Mark Sture, Transit & Fleet Manager. Highlights of the agreement include: Overtime rate at double time, effective July 1, 2017 with a maximum overtime bank of 160 hours. Lowering required years of service from 25 to 23 to receive 6 weeks of annual vacation. Employees shall receive wage increase of 2%, 2% and 1.75%. Shift premium increased January 1, 2016 from $.60 to $.75 per hour. “Unifor members are proud to serve the people of Moose Jaw and have earned a fair contract,” commented Cam Britton, Unifor National Representative. The agreement covers the period from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2017.
During a public ceremony today, the City of Moose Jaw and the Moose Jaw Police Service signed compatibility, municipal and police service agreements with the Kawacatoose First Nation (KFN) – the first step in designating land within City limits as Federal Crown Land. The agreements provide for policing and municipal services such as fire, snow removal, water/sewer for the KFN-owned land located at 914 Caribou Street West in Moose Jaw. Council approved to enter into the agreement on June 13, 2016 at its regular meeting. “The signing of these agreements is a historic move for the City of Moose Jaw,” commented Mayor Deb Higgins. “We welcome the opportunity to work with the Kawacatoose First Nation and look forward to the next steps unfolding in the process.” Confirmation of municipal servicing agreements is a pre-requisite for the KFN requesting reserve status by the federal government. The next steps are expected to take a number of months before reserve status is achieved. “Kawacatoose First Nation is honored to have a business located in the City of Moose Jaw, a City that has a Mayor and Council who value strong, forward thinking relationships with First Nations people. This represents a significant milestone for a prosperous and successful partnership that will be recognized throughout Canada,” stated Chief Dennis Dustyhorn. As Crown land, the property would be exempt from taxation so the City must enter into this fee-for-service agreement. The fee-for-service is calculated the same way as property taxes and is equal to the amount that would be billed for municipal taxes.
One of the biggest challenges in protecting the public is early notification of urgent events such as severe weather or hazardous materials spills. “Early notification of the public is one of the most important steps we can take as emergency managers in helping protect our citizens,” says Brian Wilson, City of Moose Jaw Emergency Measures Coordinator. “We’ve been asking residents and visitors to monitor our social media channels for quite some time now, this new app provides a way for Saskatchewan residents to be aware of all alerts wherever they are, and they can also monitor specific locations, such as where they have family or friends,” said Wilson. The app is easy to use, and is a free download from both Android and IOS app stores. Once installed, users can setup specific locations and adjust the app settings to follow their location so they get the most pertinent notifications based on where they happen to be at any given moment. “We need everyone to take an active part in helping prepare themselves, and downloading this free app is a very simple first step in looking after your well-being and safety,” said Wilson. The City of Moose Jaw’s Emergency Measures Organisation is part of a provincial initiative to utilize the National Alert Aggregation and Dissemination System (NAAD) to provide early notification and warning of critical events. Those alerts go to area broadcasters including television and radio, and are also broadcast on the Weather Network (television and app), along with SaskAlert. Users can set their app to only display “critical alerts” if they want to limit the number of alerts they receive. The City’s Emergency Measures Organisation, an arm of the Fire Department, is looking at opportunities to raise awareness about the new provincial imitative at upcoming events.