Alberta Environment and Parks Wapiti Corridor Update – The Committee received a report from Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) representatives who shared an overview of the province’s progress to develop an area-specific Wapiti Corridor Recreation and Trail Management Plan for the public lands within the Wapiti Corridor Multi Use Plan boundary that will soon be shared with stakeholders. The plan will provide direction and guidance for developing high quality recreation infrastructure and trail networks that are ecologically, socially, economically and operationally sustainable. AEP representatives noted a new government was elected following previous Wapiti Corridor planning efforts which led to new policy direction as outlined in Alberta’s Crown Land Vision, along with the Trails Act which provides guidance and structure for trail use in the province’s growing recreation and tourism sector.  

In December 2021, The AEP REaL (Recreation, Ecosystem and Land) Team told the County they would create a recreation plan for the unoccupied public lands between the City and the Wapiti River in 2022 with heavy emphasis on trails. In today’s presentation to the Committee, the AEP Planning Team Lead reviewed a four-phase planning process. The Committee emphasized the need for extensive public engagement and communication to the public.  

The Committee recommended to Council that the County choose to participate in the development of the Plan and appoint two Councillors as delegates to represent the County.  

Grande Prairie Regional Tourism Association (GPRTA) Annual Update – The Committee received an annual report from GPRTA representatives on their recent activities, including a re-branding of the area. The launch of the Regional Destination Management Plan included a complete restructuring of the organization with a focus on promoting the region’s tourism as a major economic driver. A three-year partnership with Seeker’s Media for the GPRTA’s ExploreNWAB campaign will bring in social media influencers to produce content about the region. The County is a member of GPRTA and the Committee emphasized the importance of celebrating attributes of the whole region.  

Crime Prevention Committee Terms of Reference to be Developed – The Committee referred to Administration to develop terms of reference for a Crime Prevention Committee, for review and approval at a future Council meeting. Community Wellness and Safety is a strategic priority for County Council that takes a holistic approach, as outlined in the County’s 2022-2026 Strategic Plan. As such, Reeve Beaupre requested that the Committee be inclusive and include stakeholders outside of crime prevention.  

KidSport Grande Prairie Funding Update The Committee received a funding report from KidSport Grande Prairie board members for the $6,000 Community Assistance Grant the County awarded the organization for 2021. KidSport provides annual grants up to $300 per child based on financial eligibility guidelines, to help cover registration fees for a season of sport for qualifying children aged 18 and under. In addition to five-year historical support of KidSport, the County also awarded the organization a $6,000 grant for 2022. 

Maskwa Medical Centre Update – The Committee received an update on the proposed Maskwa Medical Centre from members of the Centre’s Board of Directors. In March 2021, Council provided $25,000 in funding and a letter of support to assist with developing a business plan and cost benefit analysis for the proposed Centre, to be located in Grande Prairie. The concept of the Centre is modeled on the Mayo Clinic’s collaborative teams of experts and will support improving access, health outcomes, patient satisfaction and quality of life for northwestern Albertans. 

Quick-Reference Tools for Councillors – The Committee expanded on an earlier request to Administration, outlining specific needs for quick-reference documents for Councillors such as briefing notes and fact sheets. 

Review of Upcoming Agenda Items – The Committee reviewed topics scheduled for upcoming Committee of the Whole meetings.  

The next Regular Council Meeting will take place on May 16, 2022. The next Committee of the Whole Meeting will take place on May 26, 2022 

Council and Committee meetings are available to the public via live stream. Find connection instructions and meeting agendas through the events calendar on the County website.