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County will seek wildfire grants

Updates proposed for Bergen, Water Valley preparedness guides

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY – County council has instructed administration to move forward with two wildfire preparedness grants totalling $30,000.

The move came by way of motion at the recent regularly scheduled council meeting, held by teleconference.

The Forest Resource Improvement Association of Alberta has put out a call for expressions of interest for the fall intake of the FireSmart grant program.

The county used the grant in 2013 to complete the Water Valley area’s wildfire preparedness guide and for the Bergen guide in 2014.

The guides outline details such as types of structure, number of people using the structure, number of structures at each location, exact locations (latitude and longitude), and nearby water sources.

It also identifies mustering area, communication capabilities, and risk assessment.

Administration recommended that the 2020 grants be applied for and, if the application is successful, to use the funds to update the Bergen and Water Valley guides.

“Planning and development services has researched the number of building permits since the county did the plans for these areas and there are 50 new structures in the Bergen area and 70 new structures in the Water Valley area,” administration said in a briefing note to council.

The county will provide the location of the buildings and the tax roll data to allow the update to take place, members heard.

Council passed a motion directing administration to apply for the two $15,000 grants. Reeve Bruce Beattie and Coun. Al Kemmere did not attend the Sept. 2 council meeting.