It’s mid-December, and Christmas is drawing near. But it’s also time for another edition of our weekly column from the A-Team.

54 properties with tax arrears are to be sold at public auction. The municipality is owed more almost $400,000, according to Jaryn Vecchio of Mix News:

Over 50 Properties With Outstanding Tax Arrears Being Auctioned Off

On Tuesday, council approved the sale of 54 properties – all with outstanding tax arrears.

In total, $387,991 is owed to the municipality.

The majority are in Fort McMurray ranging from $4,000 to over $800,000. Two properties are being sold in Conklin, Fort Chipewyan, and Janvier, while Anzac and Saprae Creek each have one property up for sale.

One was also damaged by the Horse River wildfire.Via mix1037fm.com

The public auction will be held on March 30, 2018, at Jubilee Plaza and owners are expected to pay off their taxes before the event. At least one A-Team agent plans to attend! Please let us know if you’d like to go too and you could use some help.

Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNRL) has donated $625,000 to the Northern Lights Health Foundation’s Gratitude Campaign last November 29. The donations will be used for renovations on Conklin’s Community Clinic and upgrades to the Continuing Care Unit. From Fort McMurray Today:

Health foundation gets $625,000 donation

This donation will be split between renovations to the continuing care unit on the fourth floor of the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre, and renovations to the Community Clinic in Conklin.

Updates to the Conklin clinic include new furniture, lighting, paint and flooring, providing “a more welcoming and professional atmosphere to individuals and families,” a statement read.

At the continuing care unit, the funds will be used to provide a fresh paint job, new flooring and curtains, new tables and chairs in the common dining room, and updated furniture in resident rooms. h/t fortmcmurraytoday.com

The Gratitude Campaign is aiming at raising $16 million for eight different initiatives, including the NLHF and the Conklin clinic, palliative care suites, and more.

Credit: www.fortmcmurraytoday.com

In news from the oil sands, Cenovus Energy is planning to cut 15% of its workforce next year in their effort to reduce costs:

Cenovus Energy plans to cut 15 per cent of workforce as it looks to reduce costs

The cuts come as Cenvous says it plans between $1.5 billion and $1.7 billion in capital spending next year, mostly in the oilsands.

That compares with its guidance for capital spending this year of $1.55 billion to $1.65 billion.

Cenovus chief executive Alex Pourbaix says the company’s priorities for 2018 are to reduce costs and deleverage its balance sheet while maintaining capital discipline. Read more at mymcmurray.com

While this is bad news for the people affected, it’s another sign that the local economy hasn’t completely recovered from the oil crash, despite Alberta showing serious signs of growth.

That’s all for this weeks’ roundup. Check back on The A-Team blog for more news and updates on Fort McMurray.

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