Rotting rail cars in Alliance update

Dear Editor:
Oh wait – there is no update! Nothing has changed. Same ugly picture – different season.
What has been done to date:

1) Letters to the editors February and March 2016 and picture of decrepit rail cars bordering Alliance (also met with Village Council to air concerns in February)

2) April 2016 village council met with Battle River Rail (BRR) members, Ken Eshpeter and Matt Enright, to address issues of rail cars stored in Alliance however Dale and I were not invited to attend!

They assured council the revenue was valuable and the cars were safe! (We always supported the revenue generated – but out of town. We knew they were safe that was never our concern)

They mentioned they have cars stored in most of the other communities. Not in front of any houses that we could see.

They hadn’t been contacted directly by complainants (I guess letters to the editor of their local paper carry no authority).

Council seems delighted (in their newsletter) to say they have no authority over the cars on the line within their corporate limits.  At one time one of the councillors even told us that they live on the other end of town so they don’t bother them – wow and they represent the Alliance citizens!?

Council’s resulting question: “Would you as a business owner or farmer be receptive to a municipality giving them orders as to how to run their business?” My answer; “You damned right I would if my business was negatively impacting the citizens within the community.”

3) April 2016 we sent out a notification to the residents of Alliance and community as council seemed to think we were the only ones wanting the cars out of the village.

We had over 20 written responses, only one of which stated we got what we deserved for living close to a railroad, and many verbal responses agreeing with our request.

We are certainly not being envied by anyone wishing they had our view!

4) May 2016 I wrote a letter to each of the board members of the BRR outlining our disgust of their discourtesy of storing such hideous rail cars in our village.

5) June 2016 I received a response from Ken Eshpeter, Chairman of BRR. Some of his key points being:

A lot about main lines and storage tracks which are of absolutely no concern of mine. (Not convenient for them – sure as hell not convenient for me.  They manage the inconvenience all up and down the line in other areas!)

Opportunity to store cars and get good revenue (we have already stated on many occasions we are pleased with the grain terminal in our community and the efforts of the BRR to keep the track in great condition – we have always only asked to get the rotting rail cars the hell out of our town!)

The cars will be moved out in November (so our beautiful village continues to have a revolting entry and we don’t get to see a sunset from our home until November. Apparently that doesn’t bother any of the powers that be.)

I complained about other communities having the luxury of the cars stored outside the municipal limits but apparently that’s inconvenient as they have to be moved every time – and somehow I am supposed to care! My question is if they do it for others why not Alliance.  How rude!

6) June 2016 I replied to Ken Eshpeter stating I was totally aware of all their arguments and their logistics of the whys and wherefores – aware and totally frustrated with the lack of courtesy – so in desperation I asked if they would at least consider a three rail car break in front of our home so that we can see something other than scrap metal on wheels.

Apparently that too was an unreasonable request as nothing has been done.

I am grateful for the many who have asked Dale and me if the situation has been resolved – many from neighbouring communities, and several councillors from neighbouring communities who say they would certainly work hard to get such a mess out of their town sites and totally agree with our mission.

And well you may ask, “Why doesn’t she just get over it and leave it alone?”

My answer is because it would take such little effort to right the wrong.
Sylvia Wold,
Alliance, Ab.

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