Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 6, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
58 THE IETHBRIDCE HERAID Thursday, September 6, 1973 Small landholders form association to voice beefs By JBI LOZERON Herald Staff Writer A group of small landhold- ers in the County of Leth- bridge Wednesday formed an association to fight "what they consider unfair tax assess- ments on their land. The landholders formed the County of Lethbridge Rate- payers Association and in- structed Steve Denecky to se- lect a committee to prepare a brief to present Sept, 18 to the provincial cabinet when it visits Lethbridge. Mr. Denecky. elected pres- ident of the association, is joined by Pat Howe, treasur- er, and 'Gerard Plettell sec- retary, on the executive. The committee hopes to solicit documnted complaints from among the more than 700 appeals that have been made by the small land hold- ers to the county regarding their tax assessments, Mr. Denecky said. The meeting heard the complaints of ratepayers in the county who objected to what they consider discrim- ination in the taxation system by which small land holdings are taxed on a different ba- sis than farmland at the same time that restrictions are placed on the use of the land. Under the present system a farmer is taxed at an assess- County ivill air assessment flaws to cabinet here The County of Lethbridge will join the ranks of other organizations in Southern Al- berta in presenting a brief to the provincial cabinet on its tour later this month. In its presentation, the county will point out what it feels are weaknesses in pres- ent assessment and taxation legislation. County manager Bob Ma- dill said Wednesday the county objects to assessing small, rural landholdings at 31 per cent of market value. If the county classes small holdings as agricultural, then buildings become tax exempt and the situation could then arise where provincial home- owner grants would be great- er than municipal taxes owed. "Pretty soon the province be paying county tax- Mr. Madill said. The county brief will only outline the problem, leaving the solution to the govern- ment. "After all, they're the legislators." The county will also ask the province to take over Keho Lake Park, in the Ba- rons district, now run by the county. Mr. Madill said the park- should be up-graded. The only other park in the coun- ty, Park Lake Provincial Park, is overcrowded and small. The brief will also suggest that the government provide more money for the con- struction of drainage systems along county roads. In irrigated areas, Mr. Ma- dill said, either the St. Mary's River Irrigation Dis- trict or the Lethbridge North- ern Irrigation District helps finance drainage along road- ways. But In areas without irri- gation, the county has to pay almost the entire cost, with some assistance from the .resources division of the department of the en- vironment. tough to turn down' Students are dropping out of Lethbridge Community College courses to gain em- ployment as it becomes avail- able rather than taking a chance on being employed after graduation, LCC presi- dent C. D. Stewart says. "At this particular phase in life a job means a lot to them. And when you're offer- ed a job a month or so be- fore graduation and maybe after graduation you don't have a job I think that is what they're comparing." he told the monthly board of governors meeting Wednes- day. Jim MacNeil, director of LCC student services, sug- gested that employers atti- tudes have gone through a philosophical change during the last few years. "Ten years ago employers would say you give me a per- son with a degree of any kind and that shows me he can stand up under he can get the job done and he has some general training. And then, I'll give him spsci- fic training. they're saying give him some specific training so that he can do a job for me and make some he said. According to an LCC study presented to the board Wed- nesday, 386 students dropped out of the college during the last school year. In an interview, Dr. Stevr- art said post secondary edu- cation need not be taken in a specific block of time and students who leave classes to obtain employment should not be considered dropouts. He said students should be able to take classes and then enter their chosen field of employment when they have the opportunity and again continue their education when they fsel they need ad- ditional training. "It's what we call life-long he said. ment of per acre for farm dryland and at a rate of on irrigation land. Meanwhile the small land- holder is assesed on the ba- sis of'31 per cent of current value of land and 45 per cent on improvements to buildings on the property where the land is not used lor agricul- tural purposes'. Mr. Denecky told the rate- payers that 40 acres classed as farmland would be taxed while on the same land classed as a small landhold- ing the assessment would be five times greater, about 400. What is hoped for is some change at the provin- cial level that would reduce this difference in assessment, he said. For assessment purposes to qualify as farmland the land- holder must have more than 20 acres of land and must show that he derives a net an- nual profit of more than 500, or secondly if he has less than 20 acres he must make his principal source of in- come from the land. In order to have the hold- ing classed as farmland, the landholder must obtain from the land sufficient income said Mr. Denecky to meet the classification. However this may be diffi- cult, he told the ratepayers, because of restrictions placed by the county on the use of the land. Land zoned as rural transitional, the classification in which many small land- holders fall, is for agriculture pursuits. To raise chickens, you need a permit: on a 40- acre parcel of land, you are restricted to four horses, be said. we are going to be re- stricted on the use of our land then I say someone better listen to us on was the comment of one ratepay- er. Money Is spent developing essential services, such, as water and sewage, said Mr. Denecky. but landowners are overtaxed in relation to the ervices that are provided to us, he said. "What are we getting in re- turz for our asked another ratepayer. The county represents the people and for this reason should stand the brunt of the criitcism, said ratepayer Art Atkinson. The small landhold- er should have representation on the county council, he said. Another complaint was that landholders are given only 30 days to appeal a tax assess- ment to the county. This is in- sufficient time for a ratepay- er to take action, it was Claimed. Mr. Denecky has written to the cabinet asking for time for presentation of the brief but says he has not received a reply. County names ass't manager A new assistant manager was appointed Wednesday by the County of Lethbridge. Calista Barfett, cf Vegre- ville, will take over the posi- tion Oct. 15 and for about two months the country will have two assistant managers. Present county manager Bob Madill retires at year- end and assistant manager Bob Grant will succeed him. Mrs. Barfett is presently employed by the County of Minburn as assistant county manager. Registering students University of Leih'bridge undergraduates line up for classes and schedules, U of L studies early registration totals In the midst of the confu- sion that traditionally follows registration day at university, University of Lethbridge offi- cials are sifting through regis- tration forms hoping they will find the beginning of a trend that will lead the institution out of its enrolment doldrums. Spokesman for the U of L registrar's office say full-time students registered to the students that finished out the 1973 spring semester. But the closest statistic they can use as a comparison to 1972 preliminary fall enrol- ment is the students that on Sept. 18. 1972 indi- cated they were satisfied with their classes and went through the routine of filing class cards with the registrar. The 60-student difference between Wednesday's regis- tration of 1.080 and'last Sept. 18's could be made up, or even overtaken, by regis- trations between now and the time students have to file their class cards this year. But officials are offering no firm predictions. Officials too -are endeavor- ing to determine the effect of the government's experimen- tal S500 bursary program for certain students who enrol at the U of L. Some 80 students applied during the summer for the grants available to a maxi- mum of 200 students who do not live near a college or university and who must leave home to begin university studv. There were 1.076 students attending the U of L at the end of the fall semester last year. That figure is compar- ed with 1.218 at the university at semester's end in the fall of 1972. and at fall se- mester's end in 1971, accord- ing to U of L figures released todav. COLLEGE BOARD s to study employer needs 4> jy By JEVI GRANT Herald Staff Writer A proposal designed to im- prove the quality of instruc- tion and extend the number of educational opportunities being offered the community at the Lethbridge Community College was accepted by the LCC board of governors at its monthly meeting. The proposal will now be forwarded to the department of advanced education for further approval and funding. The research project in- cludes a careful internal evaluation of all existing pro- grams, a co ordination of similar programs being offer- ed by the various schools of learning within the college and a study of the needs of the community that would in- clude the demands of the local employers. In other board business, the governors approved the es- tablishment of a day care centre on the college campus by January, 1974. The approval followed a lengthy discussion d u r ing which the governors decided to implement the program in January rather than this fall because a master building plan still had not been de- veloped. They felt it was un- wise to alter any portion of the college buildings prior to the completion of the plan. The master plan will in- clude the present and future building and facility needs of the college. It is expected to be completed before the end of this year. Dr. Stewart suggested that a January starting date would not cause difficulties lor students with children be- cause they likely had already made arrangements to have someone care for their chil- dren this fall prior to enter- ing classes Wednesday. The governors also decided to turn down a request by residents in the area of the college for permission to con- nect their water and sewer systems to the college's main lines. Chairman R. F. Babki said he would like to see every- body share water and sewer systems, but indicated the college might have problems if it shares its systems. "At what point do you stop people from cutting into your he said. The request was made by the Rollag residents after the city refused to extend its sewage and water systems to that sub division of the city. Mr. Babki suggested the college may end up serving an entire sub division of Lethbridge and maybe would have to build another system itself, if it was to be generous with its present system with- out first considering its own future needs. About 25 homes are affect- ed by the board's decision. A motion by Robb Gregg, students council president and board member, to sell land to the students council to construct a students' coun- cil building was approved by the board. The primary function of the building will be to provide a residence for LCC students, but it will also serve as a recreation centre for stu- dents. It is expected to cost be- tween to million. Scarcity of mechanics noted Handy reference material LCC BOOKS FOR PUBLIC USE A library with over books is available for use by the residents of Lethbridge free of charge, but very few citizens are taking advantage of it. Most of the people by the library, at the Lethbridge Community Col- lege, last year were staff members or students at LCC. The lack of community use of the library likely stems from the fact it has only been operating for two years and the college didn't wish to promote it until it could han- ,dle the extra traffic. The library is now In position to serve the public and hopes to do so when call- ed upon, says Marg Wheeler, chief librarian. When establishing the li- brary, the college was care- ful not to duplicate much of the material already being offered by the public library she says. The university library is geared toward academic stu- dies information, the public library covers a wide spectrum of reading interest to the general public and the college library puts its em- phasis on technical material other informational mat- to courses being the college, ter related offered at explains. Not many people realize the LCC library has books on law enforcement, nursing, conser- vation and agriculture mech- anics, she suggested when ex- plaining that the books in the fields mentioned could be very useful to those employed in the city in related occupa- tions. "Some people were sur- prised when they used the li- brary last year to find that we had material in their of she adds. "Considering we teach ev- erything known to man we have to stock quite a wide range of she says. The library also stocks books on theatre, painting, drama, radio and television production and tax reform. Mrs. Wheeler praised the new generation of students for their interest in books and their knowledge of libraries. The library is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m Friday 10 a.m. to -i p.m. Saturday. It is closed Sun- days. There is a scarcity of train- ed mechanics in the agricul- tural machinery ac- cording to the annual report of the Lethbridge Community College's School of Agricul- ture. The report was one of sev- eral annual reports presented to the LCC board of gov- ernors' monthly m e e ting Wednesday by the various schools and dep a r tments within the college. Because of the shortage, the college is encouraging students from the large mechanized farms to take the course. It will offer a com- plete two year course in agriculture mechanics if in- dustry shows a sufficient de- mand for the training, R. David Clark, director of the LCC school of agriculture, stated in the report. At the present time the college only offers the first year of the two year course. The second year is offered at the Olds Agriculture Col- lege. The annual report of the school of liberal education showed an overall of 66 students in liberal edu- cation programs in 1972 73 from the previous year. The decrease was caussd by a substantial drop in the number of students enrolling in the college and university preparatory program. The 1972 73 enrolemnt was 195 per semester. The school of continuing education's annual report to the board of governors indi- cated a marked increase in the number of registrations in the areas of agriculture, busi- ness and technical vocation- al education. The school offered 181 courses to studsnts dur- ing 1972 73 school year. Registration figures showed an 82.7 per cent increase in the 1973 summer horseman- ship course a substantial increase over enrolment fig- ures recorded the previous summer. Of the 300 positions avail- able in the horsemanship class, 248 were filled. The evening trail ride course also proved popular with 67 people filling a possi- ble positions. Casting reflections A tranquil Henderson Lake, a can of worms, an accurate casting arm and hungry fish at sunset is almost more than any fishermen could ask. A little body English is sometimes all that is needed lo pull in two-pcund rainbow trout, planted during the past few years to pro- vide a dream in the middle of Lethbridge.