SARM Annual Convention Highlights – Day 3

Wednesday, March 12 – Highlights
Over 1700 reeves, councillors, administrators, visitors and guests, from over 270 RMs have registered at the 2008 SARM Annual Convention. 
Bear-Pit Session with Provincial Cabinet
Cabinet members in attendance at the bear pit session were Deputy Premier and Minister of Education, Ken Krawetz; Dan D’Autremont, Minister of Government Services, SLGA and Information Technology Office; Don Morgan, Minister of Justice, Ken Cheveldayoff, Minister of Crown Corporations; Rob Norris, Minister of Advanced Education, Employment and Labour; Wayne Elhard, Minister of Highways and Infrastructure; Bill Hutchinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and the Saskatchewan Gaming Corporation; Donna Harpauer, Minister of Social Services; Bob Bjornerud, Minister of Agriculture; Don McMorris Minister of Health; Rob Gantefoer, Minister of Finance; Nancy Heppner, Environment Minister; June Draude, Minister of First Nations and Metis Relations and Northern Affairs; Darryl Hicke, Minister of Corrections, Public Safety and Policing; Christine Tell, Minister Minister of Tourism, Parks, Culture and Sport  and Minister Responsible for the Capital City Commission and Lyle Stewart Minister of Enterprise and Innovation.   Some of the questions asked by delegates were on education tax, infrastructure, crop insurance, irrigation, economic development, and school closures. 

Resolutions Session

The following resolutions were debated and voted on as follows:
1   08A             Tax Loss Compensation Statements             carried
2   08A             Road Maintenance Agreements (1)                carried
3   08A             Road Maintenance Agreements (2)                carried                                    
4   08A             Rural Municipal Signing System                     carried
5   08A             Tax Assessment                                             carried
6   08A             Taxation of Mineral Rights                               lost
7   08A             Emergency Services Signage                        carried
8   08A             Standard Rural Addressing System               carried
9   08A             Control Of Predators                                       carried
10 08A             Littering Along Highways                                 carried
11 08A             Control of Big Game Animals                          carried
12 08A             Penalty for Destruction of Traffic Signs          carried
13 08A             Moratorium on School Closures                     carried
14 08A             Removal of Demand Meters                           carried
15 08A             New Agricultural Operations Utility Costs       carried
16 08A             Utility Rates for Recreational Facilities           carried
17 08A             Sask 1st Call                                                    carried
18 08A             High Speed Internet Service                            carried
19 08A             RUD Program                                                  carried   

There were four workshops held.  Brad Korbo and Steve Suchan provided an overview of the agricultural land assessment changes being implemented.  Bob Cormier provided delegates with information on severe weather climatology and statistics, severe weather forecasting and Environment Canada’s watch/warning program.  The third workshop was Sustainable Infrastructure and the Green Municipal Fund.  Russ McPherson explained the process, advantages and opportunities of promoting the value of the Saskatchewan River.  

Saskatchewan Municipal Hail Insurance Association Report
President Wayne Black introduced the SMHI board of directors.  He also highlighted the association’s years activities.  Mr. Black also announced some program changes for 2008. 

Regulatory Issues Facing the Livestock Industry
The current state of the livestock industry has shifted some of SARMs focus towards issues impacting livestock producers directly. Dr. George Luterbach, program manager from the west, Canadian Food Inspection Agency, spoke about some of the regulatory changes and outline the process the CFIA undertakes when changing and implementing such regulations.  Al Patau, Director at Large with the Saskatchewan Stockgrowers brought the producer perspective on how these regulatory issues can positively or negatively impact a livestock producer. 

SARM Banquet and Entertainment
Over 500 tickets were sold for the SARM Wednesday night Banquet, featuring entertainment by comedian Derek Edwards.  CIBC Wood Gundy sponsored the banquet and the entertainment was sponsored by New Holland.