Stettler County residents oppose Waste Management’s license renewal

If Waste Management Systems license to operate west of Big Valley on Hwy 590 isn’t renewed, they will be forced to shut down, says Patrick Kalita, Area Director Disposal Operations Western Canada for Waste Management.
Kalita told Stettler County council during its regular meeting Dec. 13 that their license expires at the end of 2017 but Alberta Environment granted them a one-year extension to review their application and new standards.
“If Alberta Environment declines our application we would not be able to continue operations.”
The facility has received complaints from nearby residents.
“We received three statements (from residents) concerned with the application.”
Kalita said litter after 100 km/hour winds is one issue.
“After a wind storm event we inspect the site and bring out litter pickers the next day, to day and a half.”
About five residents opposed to the extension of the license were in attendance during the council meeting and met with Coun. Dave Grover and Kalita.
The approximate 370-acre facility utilizes about 111 acres for disposal of construction and demolition debris, contaminated soil from oil and gas sites as well as industrial waste.
It opened in 1992 and is capable of handling waste until about 2050.

Board of Trade request
Stettler County council wants to meet with the Stettler Regional Board of Trade before contributing money towards the board’s 2018 Open Farm Days bus tours and Taste of the Heartland long table dinner.
Coun. Wayne Nixon said the price of the meal was high.
Likewise, Coun. Ernie Gendre said $99 for a meal was “exuberant” and not something many locals could afford. He suggested $45 to $50 would be more reasonable.
Coun. James Nibourg agreed that any time the county is spending taxpayers’ money they need to know where the money is going.
“It can’t be an open-ended cheque,” he said adding that county staff put in many hours of labour for the event and labour is a huge cost to the county.
Coun. Nixon made a motion that county staff meet with the board of trade to discuss the 2018 event and come up with an agreement that works for both parties. The motion was carried.

2018 interim budget adopted
Stettler County council adopted its $16.6 million 2017 operating budget as the 2018 interim operating budget so the county has authority to operate Jan. 1, 2018.
County council will review its 2018 operating budget in December.
Council voted in favour of giving county staff a 1.3 per cent salary increase effective Jan. 1, 2018, as outlined in the October 2017 Consumer Price Index for Alberta.
In a report to council prepared by Tim Fox, Chief Administrative Officer, it was pointed out that neighbouring Lacombe County gave its staff a 2.5 per cent increase, County of Kneehill 1.3 per cent and Paintearth County zero per cent.

County helps area groups
The county will hand out $52,357 to help fund various recreation projects. They include: Botha Community Centre – $8,400; Donalda Agricultural Society – $3,000; Gadsby Community Centre – $6,760; Linda Hall – $4,800; Stettler and District Ag Society – Riding Arena roof repairs – $12,000; Big Valley Agricultural Society – $5,000; Big Valley Drop-in Centre – $7,397; and Erskine Social Recreation Society – $5,000.

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