Opinion Letters

Not happy with process of naturalization changes

City of Camrose council has opted out of their original naturalization plans for a scaled back version that has yet to be decided. File photo

City of Camrose council has opted out of their original naturalization plans for a scaled back version that has yet to be decided. File photo

I am somewhat disappointed in the way the process was done on the Naturalization Program options. Options that were offered to city council at the meeting on May 15. Obviously, the city management only considered to invite groups not in opposition to the program for discussions on options for consideration by council. By reading the Camrose Canadian and the Booster I found out Blue Dot representative Rajan Rathnavalu had some say in the options offered.

The naturalization opposition representatives were never given notice of these meetings or offered the opportunity to attend. 

I am extremely happy to see that council and management have decided that for any further expansion on this program, a public consultation will be offered to the area residencies that will be affected. I was approached by the City of Camrose, Community Services manger Ryan Poole and we discussed a possible compromise on the matter. There are areas in this city where the grasses are trimmed that could be allowed to go back to naturalization, (Grand Truck Park, located in the back alley just east of Camrose Drive, north side of Duggan Lake, etc.). These are places where visitors and residents of our community would possibly accept this program. 

As the organizer of the petition against the naturalization program — which has over 1,000 signatures on it — the number of signatures obtained will allow us to approach the Alberta Courts, apply for the plebiscite to be forced and placed on the Oct. 16 Municipal Election Ballot, which I am prepared to do. 

I am proposing that the mayor, council and city management consider another option, which I will call Option 5: 

The City of Camrose council and management revert its decision to implement the naturalization program along Camrose Drive; go back to mowing the grass in and next to any residential areas from the fence lines to the boundary of the pavement of Camrose Drive — this action would keep the weeds, rodent infestation under control and improve the aesthetic appearance as one drives on Camrose Drive. Mow around the trees that were planted, once they mature (which will take time), it will make the drive pleasurable. In Option 4 it was mentioned that the grass along the residences be mowed in the late fall period (which I am assuming that the City of Camrose management is now admitting that the naturalization program does indeed create a fire hazard) to eliminate the hazard to the residencies immediately next to the program. 

The weed infestation within the city boundaries must be taken control of; as the weeds within the city limits are out of control and the City of Camrose is contravening the Alberta Weed Control Act. As seen from last year, proper weed control practices must be taken and good agricultural practices be utilized in the control of the weeds.

Place the naturalization in the valley or in the parks where the areas are indeed natural. That is the only place where the program should be considered as natural. Any areas other than this would not be considered a natural area as modifications to the soil areas have been made. 

Rodger Banack   



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