Kneehill County council hears septic contractors in short supply

Written by Stu Salkeld

Kneehill County council granted an extension to a subdivision approval after hearing the owners were having difficulty finding a contractor to do required septic work.

The decision was made at the Dec. 14 regular meeting of council.

Councillors read a report from Brandy Hay-Morgan, planning and development officer, regarding Bill and Patsy Dau’s request to extend certain deadlines related to their property located at KNE210154, NW 19-30-23 W4M, Plan 9710820, Lot 1.

“KNE210154 is a subdivision relating to a portion of the NW 19-30-23 W4M, Plan 9710820, Lot 1,” stated Hay-Morgan in her memo to council.

Hay-Morgan presented councillors with the extension request from the Daus which stated the reason for the request was, “Trouble getting sewer installers, can’t do it until spring.”

In her report, Hay-Morgan stated, “Landowners are given a year from the date of approval in which to meet the conditions of approval.

“If the conditions are met, the subdivision approving authority is required to endorse the subdivision to allow registration at land titles.

“There are multiple factors involved with this specific subdivision. The main reason for the extension is the applicant is required to change the current septic system.

“It has been difficult for the applicants to secure a contractor this past summer, due to the short construction window for the installation of septic systems in Alberta. 

“Therefore, an extension for this subdivision file is required for the applicant to finalize the conditions set out in the approval on Feb. 25, 2021.

“A typical extension is granted for one year, in this case the extension would be granted for another year until Feb. 27, 2023. Feb. 25, 2023 falls on a Saturday,” added Hay-Morgan, who noted staff recommended granting the extension.

She explained that only council has the authority to extend the deadlines and can extend as many times as they see fit.

Coun. Laura Lee Machell-Cunningham asked the planner for more details about what the specific problem was on the Dau’s property. 

Hay-Morgan answered that the original application was a boundary adjustment, and in such a case everything related to the Dau’s property must remain within their property.

However, noted Hay-Morgan, part of the Dau’s septic system is encroaching a bit on a neighbouring property. The septic system needs to be fully contained on the Dau’s property, she added.

Coun. Debbie Penner stated that it’s obviously a legitimate request as new standards for such work were introduced which then seemed to result in a shortage of contractors who are qualified to do work such as this.

Councillors unanimously agreed through resolution to extend the Dau’s subdivision requirements to Feb. 27, 2023.

 

Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

ECA Review

About the author

Stu Salkeld

Stu Salkeld, who has upwards of 28 years of experience in the Alberta community newspaper industry, is now covering councils and other news in the Stettler region and has experience working in the area as well.

He has joined the ECA Review as a Local Journalism Initiative Journalist.

Stu earned his two-year diploma in print journalism from SAIT in Calgary from 1993 to ’95 and was raised in Oyen, Alta., one of the communities within the ECA Review’s coverage area.