MD council decides land is for the dogs

·3 min read

With the province announcing a slew of new restrictions limiting indoor and outdoor social gatherings, individual recreation in the great outdoors has become one of the few ways for people to get out of the house.

Fortunately, during its Dec. 8 meeting, council for the MD of Pincher Creek directed administration to prepare a way for individuals to get out with man’s best friend.

Lundbreck dog park

After collecting information through an online survey, council directed administration to amend the land-use designation to turn a portion of MD land north of Lundbreck’s Patton Park into an off-leash dog park.

Over 85 per cent of survey respondents said the MD could benefit from an area where dogs could safely play, particularly since many indicated they currently take their pooches to the Pincher Creek dog park.

The survey also indicated having the park entirely fenced was the most important quality, while having it within walking distance was the least.

The proposed land amendments will be brought back for council’s review in the new year.

Utilities bylaw

Council unanimously passed second and third readings of Bylaw 1320-20, which regulates the terms, conditions and rates for water, wastewater and solid waste services provided by the MD.

With a water treatment plant set to be built at Beaver Mines and water lines out to Castle Mountain Resort constructed, the bylaw is a necessary step forward as development begins.

Hittin’ the road

A $30,000 expenditure was approved to repair a section of road at NW 20-5-28-W4 on Township Road 5-4. The road was damaged as a result of a failed culvert.

Repairs were completed last week.

Two separate sections of road were also approved for closure. The first, located between NE 6-6-1-W5 and NW 5-6-1-W5, was granted back in May 2019 at the request of a landowner. Gathering final documentation, including information from a surveyor, was delayed until the beginning of the month.

The landowner is responsible for all costs associated with the closure, purchase and consolidation of the road with their adjacent parcel. A public hearing for the closure will be held Jan. 12 at 1 p.m.

The second closure is located at NE 12-7-3-W5. The section is no longer required for public travel and will be closed to satisfy environmental conditions for a subdivision plan in the area. The current road is at risk and will be consolidated with another to become wider

An old policy regarding snow removal and road maintenance in forestry reserves was also approved for removal, since forestry roads are now the responsibility of the provincial government.

Removing the policy helps better organize the MD’s documentation process.

Reserves and conserve

Several amendments to the MD’s financial policy C-FIN-523 were approved.

Changes included authorizing the chief administrative officer (or a designate) to use up to $50,000 in reserve funds in an emergency situation, as well as changing the Town of Pincher Creek reserve to the Regional Community Initiatives reserve.

The reserve will fund capital expenditures intended to benefit the greater community in the town of Pincher Creek, village of Cowley and municipality of Crowsnest Pass. Budgeting for the reserve will be set at an annual per capita rate.

Approval was also given to Nature Conservancy of Canada’s notice of conservation easement. The 60-day notice period was also waived, allowing the NCC to immediately register the easement.

A conservation easement involves landowners deferring land rights to a specified area for conservation purposes. The easement is part of NCC’s Shoderee project, which recently added 320 acres to what was previously approved for conservation.

Next meeting

MD of Pincher Creek council will next hold its regular meeting online on Tuesday, Jan. 12, at 1 p.m. Online agenda packages are available at https://bit.ly/MDcouncil, and the link to attend virtually is available at www. mdpinchercreek.ab.ca.

Sean Oliver, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shootin' the Breeze