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Combined municipal effort to improve asset management

Sundre to join regional cohort on collaborative approach

SUNDRE — The municipality has decided to support an application to join an asset management cohort program.

Facilitated by Rural Municipalities of Alberta, Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, as well as Infrastructure Asset Management Alberta, the opportunity offers participating municipalities the ability to organize asset management capacity-building cohorts that will be offered this year and next.

The Town of Didsbury had previously approached Sundre’s administrative staff with a proposal to apply as a group, including the Town of Blackfalds, to increase the chance of acceptance, reads background information provided in council’s agenda for a special meeting conducted by teleconference on July 28.

“Each cohort, funded through the FCM’s (Federation of Canadian Municipalities) Municipal Asset Management Program, will support a small group of 10 to 12 municipalities in collaboratively improving their asset management capacity, and sharing lessons learned with other municipalities,” it states.

Linda Nelson, chief administrative officer, told council that, “Asset management is growing in importance for municipalities all across Alberta and Canada.”

The background in council’s agenda added the costs and work associated with integrating asset management into municipal decision-making and operations is often significant. But joining a cohort would at no cost — except for travel expenses — provide an opportunity to learn the basics of asset management as well as receive support from experts on how to get started.

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities states on its website that, “Asset management helps communities manage municipal infrastructure assets and make better investment decisions.”

Coun. Richard Warnock moved to support administration’s application for the cohort program, and that the municipality commits staff and other personnel in the initiative to advance the town’s asset management. That motion carried unanimously.