Lacombe County, Eckville sign intermunicipal agreement

LACOMBE COUNTY – Following a number of discussions and meetings, Lacombe County Council and Eckville town council signed an Intermunicipal Collaboration Framework (ICF) between their municipalities. 

The details of the ICF document specifies what and how services are funded and delivered, and highlights the ways that the county and town can work together efficiently. 

“We have enjoyed a strong relationship with the Town of Eckville for many, many years,” said Reeve Paula Law. “The signing of these ICF agreements paves a path forward for continued collaboration and communication between Lacombe County and the Town of Eckville.” 

The Lacombe County / Town of Eckville ICF includes the following key points: 

• That access will be provided to municipal facilities, programs and services to each other’s residents in a manner that does not differentiate among them. 

• A joint approach will be taken to capital planning for capital assets that deliver mutual benefit to both municipalities. 

• A shared investment for shared benefit has been agreed to regarding capital planning and cost-sharing. 

• The municipalities will be provided with an opportunity for input into policy and service level development regarding operating cost-sharing. 

• Service Inventories were created for both Eckville and Lacombe County to outline the types of services, funding mechanisms, and the party(ies) responsible for delivering each service, including Solid Waste Collection and Disposal, Fire Response Services, Emergency Management, Recreation Services, Library Services and Seniors Housing. 

 “We have always had successful partnerships with Lacombe County and other municipalities within the County and feel we were ahead of the process, with the ICF being the only agreement we needed to complete,” said Eckville Mayor Helen Posti. “This exercise allowed us to see if the agreements inherited from past councils were still relevant or needed updating.” 

Background Information: Intermunicipal Collaboration Frameworks (ICFs) 

Municipalities that share a common boundary must create an Intermunicipal Collaboration Framework (ICF), which is a new legislated requirement that was introduced in the Modernized Municipal Government Act in 2016. Municipalities have until March 31, 2020 to finalize all required ICFs for their municipality. 

Frameworks are intended to: 

• provide for integrated and strategic planning, delivery and funding of intermunicipal services 

• allocate scarce resources efficiently in delivering local services 

• ensure municipalities contribute funding to services that benefit their residents

Each framework must identify which service they provide, which service is shared between municipalities, and which are provided by third parties. The ICF also details how the services listed below are funded/delivered: 

• transportation 

• water and wastewater 

• solid waste 

• emergency services 

• recreation, and 

• any other services that benefit residents in more than one of the municipalities that are parties to the framework