Stettler county council will discuss a water line hook-up request with the applicant, noting if there is more than one hook up it’s more likely to be approved. The water line hook up request was discussed at the Nov. 15 regular meeting of council.
Tax and Assessment Clerk Sharon Larsen stated an anonymous property owner applied to the County of Stettler for a water line hook up. The staff memo supplied to councillors noted the property’s location as Plan 2120944, Block 1, Lot 1, which was described as a portion of SW 21-41-20-W4.
“With the drought conditions in our county, the ratepayer has asked for a connection to water for his house,” stated the staff memo. “The resident’s parcel of land is located south east of an existing water line.”
During discussion Larsen noted the property in question is directly south of the water line.
“This ratepayer has lost their water there,” said Larsen. “They’ve had problems with their well.”
Larsen further explained the applicant had apparently unhooked from the problematic well and she was not sure how the property owner was actually getting water.
The staff memo explained the request could be granted in a few different ways that all appeared to cost county ratepayers money over and above what the applicant would pay on the standard $15,000 hook up fee.
“There are two options,” stated the staff memo. “Council may construct the line far enough south to be in line with the main house. The cost of this option would come out to $35,800.00.
“If the water line were to shorten the dig up to 75 metres and have a meter vault just past the bare acreage, the budget would be around $23,500.00. There is no amount budgeted in 2023 for this additional expense.”
Coun. James Nibourg noted it’s probably not feasible to drill another well if the last one failed but he noted that if another nearby residence was included in this application, it would make this project feasible.
Larsen stated the residence on the balance of the quarter belongs to a different owner than the one on the acreage; she noted the house is in the process of being subdivided out so the owner of the north acreage would be the same if that subdivision is successful.
Nibourg suggested county staff discuss the multiple hook up idea with the applicant as two or more hook ups make the project much more feasible.
Reeve Larry Clarke observed that if only one hook up was included in this application, it will likely be filed until it’s financially feasible.
Coun. Dave Grover agreed the ball should go back into the applicant’s court and encourage the applicant to find another hook up. He added that if there’s only one hook up in this application, the County of Stettler shouldn’t pay any extra costs, the applicant should pay them.
Nibourg wondered if the County of Stettler denied similar requests in the past for these reasons.
While it was noted this application came through Coun. Justin Stevens, Stevens appeared to be attending this discussion virtually. He stated through a text message that this hook up applicant paid $17,000 in the County of Stettler’s Rural Development Fund (RDF) and that should be taken under consideration.
Nibourg disagreed, stating the RDF is “…a different matter,” and added that suggestions that contributions to the RDF be considered could therefore apply to everyone wanting water hook ups, including large industrial users, who Nibourg noted, “…would be the guys that would be the first in line.”
The reeve also noted the County of Stettler offers financing options for water line hook up applicants.
Councillors unanimously passed a resolution that County of Stettler staff would discuss multiple hook ups with the original applicant.
Local Journalism Initiative reporter