Municipal Development Plan receives final approval

Kneehill County Logo

The Municipal Development Plan (MDP) was given final approval at the Kneehill County Council meeting for July 18, but not without some concerns. A bit of confusion reigned at the County’s July 18 meeting when Council held second reading of their Draft Municipal Development Plan, Bylaw 1735 and the motion was defeated. Clr. Wittstock abstained from voting as he had missed the public hearing. Clr. Holsworth and Clr. Calhoun voiced concerns with the different Environmentally Significant Area maps. After a break, Council returned with a motion to reconsider holding second reading, had further discussion, made some wording changes and then made the motion for second reading, which passed along with the third reading. The amendments approved were to use the Summit ESA Hazard Map. Barb Hazelton, Manager, Planning and Development, further added that mapping is not the issue. “What is important is the need to look closer (at the shade identified on the map) to see exactly what the significant area is referencing and have whatever requirements are necessary, met or satisfied.” She clarified that the ‘shading’ for any particular 1/4 section may not be the entire section, but just a small portion. “If the area is flagged it tells us (planning) we need to take a closer look. If you don’t see the shading (designating an environmental hazard) it doesn’t mean a developer wouldn’t have to jump through hoops. If it’s more hazardous, then more hoops to jump; its site specific.” Clr. Calhoun wanted clarification that Council (and MPC) should have some flexibility to meet or mitigate specific concerns, including allowing a development (a house for example) on a safe portion of the ‘flagged’ section, without the owner of the land having to go through all the expensive, time consuming studies when it’s not warranted.

Amendments to the MDP

• Page 9, under the Agriculture section, policy 11 (1) “In hazard lands or environmentally sensitive lands as defined by the ‘Summit Environmentally Significant Areas map’.

• Page 15, under the Environmental section, Goal 1: “To protect and conserve environmentally sensitive lands as defined by the ‘Summit ESA map’.

• Page 33, under Definitions: Environmentally Significant Area (ESA) means an area considered to have environmental features of importance to Kneehill County as defined by the ‘Summit ESA map, and amended from time to time.”

Re-designations and Public Hearings

Bylaw 1749, was given first reading for the purpose of amending Land Use Bylaw 1718 to re-designate a one-acre portion at NW 26-33-26-W4, from Agriculture District to Hamlet General. This portion of land in Wimborne was recently subdivided with a portion to be consolidated with another property that is zoned Hamlet General. Administration initiated the subdivision to provide access to the adjacent landowner. Ms. Brandy Morgan, Planning & Development explained, “As this is a clean-up to ensure the existing residence has legal and physical access, a Hamlet General re-designation is proposed.” She further explained that it would also ensure that the entire parcel is consistently zoned, and asked that the fee be waived. Council gave approval. Public Hearing is scheduled for August 15, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.

First Reading was given to a proposed Bylaw 1750, Land Use Bylaw amendment, for the re-designation of Lot 6 in Torrington from Hamlet Residential to Hamlet Industrial. The parcel is about 0.34 acres and is accessed via Railway Avenue. South and West Lots adjacent to the subject parcel are zoned Hamlet Industrial. The development permit application is a retail agricultural store, to include seed, ag chemicals, agronomy services, fertility products and specialty grain/pulses. The re-designation ensures that set-back requirements under the Agrichemical Warehousing Standards Association, can be met. A Public Hearing is scheduled for August 15, 2017 at 11:00 a.m.

Municipal Services

Laurie Watt, Director of Municipal Services prepared a summary report for Council comprised of Transportation, Protective Services, Planning and Development, Environmental Services, and Agricultural Services, Cemeteries and Parks. A few highlights are that there were a total of 51 dust suppressant applications, 9.5 miles of dirt trails have been upgraded (to date), new culverts and drainage ditches in Huxley, re-decked bridge (wooden) on Rge Rd 23-0, with a total of 18 bridge inspections to be contracted out, and there were three major slides this year so far (SW 5-28-20, SW 3-33-23, and NW 5-32.25). Under Planning there 45 development permits, three alternative energy permits, two home occupations, six re-designations, and 18 subdivisions and a number of safety codes. Water and sewer services were installed for the Huxley Ball Diamond project, three new water connections were installed (Grainger and Sunnyslope), the water sample station in Gamble was repaired, a fire hydrant was installed at the Fire Training Yard in Trochu, and there were various repairs and servicing to pump houses. WIFI is now available for Keiver’s Lake campground, and other services were installed at 12 lower stalls, outhouses have been installed at Orkney Lookout, a new dug out for Swalwell ball diamond (old one destroyed in wind storm), and the paleontological survey for trails at Horseshoe Canyon were completed.

Horseshoe Canyon

There has been significant erosion at Horseshoe Canyon that caused structural damage to the stairs. They were removed and used elsewhere and a different method was used to create a safe route down and hand rails will be installed. There has been landscaping and interpretive maps, the outhouse repaired and painted, and ongoing clean up of age-old garbage (wire, oil filters, etc.). A rebar /cement dinosaur, received as a gift from Drumheller is sitting in the County shop awaiting repairs to make it more structurally sound. and 59,500 people May 1 to July 4, 2017, 5885 over July long weekend, 2923 one day July 3. Within the surveys, 74% of visitors at the Canyon were visiting Drumheller (mainly Tyrrell Museum) and 27% visitors were from Calgary.


Signage at Horseshoe Canyon will be delayed a bit longer as Council had various issues with the branding or logos brought before them today. Administration was asked to bring back more logo options for the next council meeting.

Road Project deferred

Tenders were significantly over budget for Road Project on Range Road 25-1 (B1754) for sub grade repair and widening of the road. One of the issues identified was due to difficulty in securing soil (borrow pit), resulting in additional costs for resources and trucking. Council approved Transportation to acquire a land agreement for a borrow pit and re-tender, deferring the road project until 2018 and combine the tender with the Sharples Road Project.

There was concern about bank erosion of Kneehill Creek affecting a portion of Range Rd 21-1A (Dunphy) and moving the road was added to the list of road projects for 2018.

Council held some discussion on dust control products utilized for 2017.

New Business

Policy 15-10, Youth Sponsorship was reviewed and a resolution by Council would permit the sponsoring of teams that reside outside of Kneehill County, if Kneehill residents (urban/rural) are part of the team. Prior to this resolution, the County was sponsoring individuals and it was found that the financials would be just as acceptable for a team.

A request from the Medical Clinic Enhanced Services Review Committee for an extended period of free rent until May 1, 2018 (was May 1, 2017) and 50% rent for six months, which now would be from June 2018 to November 2018, was approved.

Council authorized Reeve Long to attend the 2017 Three Hills Community Discovery Night, Wednesday, Sept. 6 at the Curling Rink from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The Reeve was also authorized to attend the Grand Opening of the County of Stettler’s new Public Works Facility for July 20, 2017.

Council authorized Clr. Painter to attend the Village of Delburne Tenth Annual Charity Golf Tournament for Friday, Sept. 8, 2017. Cost is $65/person. The County had also donated two hole sponsorships in the amount of $200 for this event.