Monday, April 27, 2015

Alta link Update---Crowsnest Pass no longer an option

On a positive note you can see that based on the following information the Alta Link line is not coming to the Crowsnest Pass:
A lot of effort went in to this process, and a lot of our residents voiced their concerns about this power link. Bottom link for once speaking up made a difference.

Dear Municipal Stakeholder:
Today, as part of my commitment to keep you informed of AltaLink’s projects in your area, I’m pleased to send you the Castle Rock Ridge to Chapel Rock round 2 public consultation material being mailed in the coming days to the landowners and stakeholders in your Municipal District.  AltaLink will also be providing your municipal office with printed versions of this material so you’ll have exactly what stakeholders will receive in their mail boxes.  All the project details and the proposed schedule are shown in the Newsletter and other information attached.
AltaLink has refined the routing under consideration by adjusting some proposed routes and eliminating other routes and substation sites.  The Dropped Route Letter will only be sent to the Stakeholders whose land is on dropped routes but is included in this email for information purposes.
The proposed project includes:
·       A new substation, to be called Chapel Rock Substation, located near the existing 500 kV (500,000 volts) 1201L transmission line. The proposed substation site will be approximately 255 by 210 metres (820 by 1,150 feet).
·       The existing Castle Rock Ridge Substation will be expanded as part of this project to accommodate the termination of the proposed new 240 kV transmission line. We are proposing to extend the northeast and northwest fence by approximately 25 metres (82 feet) in each direction.
·       Approximately five to 15 kilometres (3.1 to 9.3 miles) of two new, single circuit 500 kV transmission lines will also be required. The length of these lines depends on the location of the Chapel Rock Substation. We are proposing to use two single circuit, guyed structures for the portion within the hills west of Highway 22. These structures will be used for straight portions of the line. At locations where the line deflects, self-supporting steel lattice structures will be used.
·       Approximately 24 to 37 kilometres (15 to 23 miles) of new double circuit 240 kV transmission line from the existing Castle Rock Ridge Substation to the proposed Chapel Rock Substation. Final line length is dependent on the route approved by the AUC.
Open Houses
May 26, 2015
Cowley, Ab
3 to 7 p.m.
Cowley District Hall
122 Cameron Street, Cowley
May 27, 2015
Pincher Creek, Ab
3 to 7 p.m.
Heritage Hotel
919 Waterton Avenue
Pincher Creek
June 2, 2015
Calgary, Ab
3 to 7 p.m.
Coast Plaza Hotel
1316 33 Street NE
There are numerous ways for the public and stakeholders to provide input including:
o   email us at           
o   calling our toll-free line at 1-877-269-5903
o   our website
o   participating in a one-on-one consultation
Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO)
o   calling the toll-free line at 1-888-866-2959
Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC)
o   calling at 780-427-4903 (You can call toll-free by dialing 310-0000 before the number.)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Crowsnest Pass council opposes transmission line

Crowsnest Pass council opposes transmission line

Great article on the Crowsnest Council's position on the Altalink line.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Taxes in the Crowsnest Pass 2015

Well we are almost at the end of the budget process, we did first reading of the mill rate bylaw last night.

The common questions I get asked:

How much are taxes going up?  2%

This will generate an additional $140,000 in tax revenue, which will be off set by a $146,000 drop in the School foundation rate. So unless your assessment went way up, the average resident should see virtually no increase in their over all taxes.

Is the mill rate going down? yes 3.2% our assessment base was up this year with 1% new development and a little over 3% in increased property values so the mill rate had to decease or taxes would have gone up an additional 3%.

What's happening to our utility bills? They are going up $4.98 per month.

What about Franchise Fees? No change.

Is the municipality hiring new staff? We will be hiring one position this fall to replace a person who is anticipated to retire next year. (CUPE position).

Are we putting money into reserves? Yes 2% of our operating budget.

The problem today we still have a deficit of $117,000

Municipal Options?

Increase revenue by that amount.
Decrease spending
Run with a deficit which with provincial approval we could have up to three years to fix.


When we sat down with Administration on Monday April 13 to resolve the deficit we came up with the following cuts. The first item the municipality was informed late Friday that almost $20,000 the province as always paid us In Lieu of taxes on the seniors buildings (Westwinds and Tecumesh Manor) were cut in the most recent provincial budget so our deficit actually increased at the start of the meeting.

·      Decrease in Senior’s housing revenue of ($18,904)
·      Reduce administration contingency budget by $50,000
·      Remove budget for by-elections of $4,500
·      Reduce Deputy Fire Chief contracted services by $20,000
·      Increase enforcement services fines revenue by $10,000
·      Budget to receive $50,000 back from the 2014 Hillcrest 100th anniversary
·      Reduce costs to produce municipal newsletter by $10,000
·      Reduce fire/rescue budget by $5,000

Monday, April 6, 2015

Grassy Mountain Coal Project-Public Input

Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
Public Notice - Revised
Grassy Mountain Coal Project — Public Comments Invited
April 1, 2015 — As part of the strengthened and modernized Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012 (CEAA 2012) put in place to support the government's Responsible Resource Development Initiative, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (the Agency) must decide whether a federal environmental assessment is required for the proposed Grassy Mountain Coal Project, located in Alberta. To assist it in making its determination, the Agency is seeking comments from the public on the project and its potential effects on the environment.
Benga Mining Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Riversdale Resources Limited, is proposing to construct and operate an open-pit metallurgical coal mine near the Crowsnest Pass, approximately seven kilometres north of the community of Blairmore, in south-west Alberta. As proposed, the production capacity of the project would be a maximum of four million tonnes of clean coal per year, over a mine-life of about 25 years.
Written comments must be submitted by April 20, 2015 to:
Grassy Mountain Coal Project
Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
Canada Place
9700 Jasper Avenue, Suite 1145
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 4C3
Telephone: 780-495-2037
Fax: 780-495-2876
For further details regarding the environmental assessment of the Grassy Mountain Coal Project, please visit Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency’s website at…

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Alta Link-Crowsnest Pass

If you are not aware by now Alta Link has one of their options, is looking at a Crowsnest Pass route to run their Castle Rock Ridge to Chapel Rock Transmission line.

Municipal council came out strongly opposed to this route for many issues including, environmental, aesthetics, etc. If you go out to the east side of Pincher Creek and take a look at the horrible sight of transmission lines it should be enough to tell you why we don't want them here.

I know our neighbors don't want to see this new transmission line neither. But at least they gain all the millions of tax dollars from the wind mills annually. Alta Link informed us that the transmission line would generate $80,000 a year in taxes for us.

We are being told that in the next couple of months Alta link will be coming back with their options narrowed down to two.

If you are concerned about this issue contact Altalink at or 1-877-269-5903.