A third garbage collection bin could be part of the future for Saskatoon residents. City Council has approved looking at a plan that includes green bins for yard and food waste. The “Pay-As-You-Throw” system part of the overall plan calls for residents to pay for collection according to the bins they choose. Councillor Anne Iwanchuk opposed that idea saying many large families can’t afford the extra cost. She also spoke against the green bins saying a large number of residents don’t have room for them. Councillor Mairin Loewen stated the status quo isn’t acceptable. She feels Saskatoon lags behind the majority of municipalities in diverting waste from the landfill because of the current system. Council approved keeping recycling bins their current size and maintaining the frequency of pickup, but put off a decision on the proposed borrowing of $8.5 million to buy the green bins. Councillors expect to consider more specific and detailed information this September.
Council has approved zoning and regulations for the city’s seven proposed Cannabis retail outlets. There must be a 60-metre separation between outlets and areas frequented by children including schools, parks and daycares. A Nutana resident feels that’s too close. Don Scott pointed to much larger proposed buffer zones in several other Canadian cities. Scott says children will be more likely to try the drug if it’s within closer proximity.
Council also approved a $20-thousand licensing fee and will consider an annual renewal cost of $10-thousand pending an administrative review of the first year of operations. The Executive Director of the Broadway Business Improvement District told council during Monday night’s public hearing, she fears the high fee in addition to the storefront rental cost could keep potential Cannabis retailers out of the district. DeeAnn Mercier also cautioned the fee could be passed on to consumers through higher product pricing and keep the black-market more viable in Saskatoon.