The Canadian Federation of Independent Business is sticking by their 2018 Report on Municipal Spending showing the Town of Turner Valley as one of the worst in Alberta when it comes to operational spending.
Turner Valley Mayor Gary Rowntree called the numbers "skewed" because of the rise in spending by 841 per cent over a ten year period from 2006 to 2016.
He says what the report failed to take into account was the $13.9 million given to the Town by the Province to repair their water system after the 2013 flood.
Amber Ruddy, the Alberta Director with the CFIB says they did ask for clarification.
"We did reach out to Turner Valley a few weeks before the report came out. Unfortunately, they couldn't explain it. So, we weren't going to completely throw out this information because it's an "apples-to-apples" comparison that we get from the Alberta Municipal Affairs website."
Ruddy, says they do look for ways to improve their reporting.
"But frankly, Turner Valley wasn't doing that well in the report over the years prior to this big number coming through. Part of this conversation goes to how can we make a better business climate for the small businesses that they have in the community. So I welcome the discussion on how to get there."
Ruddy says they agree that the over the top number had them asking questions.
"And that's exactly why we did reach out to the Municipality of Turner Valley about a month prior to the report coming out. We had over half a dozen exchanges, and frankly they couldn't explain it to us when we were doing that. So, unfortunately we had to go ahead and publish the report, it's unfortunate that could not have been caught in the due diligence."
She says they've sent a response to the Town, after receiving a letter from Rowntree demanding a retraction.
She says they'll re-issue the report with notations indicating municipalities which receive funding for natural disasters.
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