Falher questions population rules

Richard Froese
South Peace News

Municipal councils considering plans to conduct their own census in an attempt to get more funding from the provincial government, may have to think again.
Town of Falher council learned that at its regular meeting June 8.
“The provincial government is no longer accepting municipal census data for its official population lists,” CAO James Bell said.
The Municipal Affairs Population List has been discontinued and been replaced by population estimates from Alberta Treasury Board and Finance, which has adopted its own methodology, he says.
Population figures from the federal census by Statistics Canada will be the base for municipal data, he added.
“The Town of Falher has requested the Treasury Board and Finance provide its methodology paper,” Bell says.
“However, they have yet to publish it to the public.”
Council presented the request to Municipal Affairs Minister Ric McIver in 2021 at the Alberta Municipalities convention and plans to do so again when the 2022 convention is held Sept. 21-23 in Calgary.
“It is our hope that advocacy with and through Municipal Affairs will provide positive outcomes,” Bell said.
“However, this matter is in the hands of Treasury and Finance and Finance.”
For decades many Alberta municipalities had the option to conduct their own census when they believed their figures from the national census were lower than predicted.

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