Suzanne Oel Councillor
Black Diamond/Turner Valley/Longview Local Political News Priddis/Millarville/Red Deer Lake

Councillor Update – Suzanne Oel – MD Foothills – Feb 2021

Snow Event: Over the Christmas holidays, we experienced one of the biggest snowfall events in years – 2 feet of snow across the whole county. Public Works employees worked diligently to remove the continuing dump of snow, over the period of a few days. Then another smaller snowfall took place only a couple days later. We had some issues related to taking resident calls, as there were many requests for service. After a post-event discussion in Council, our Administration recommended that we plan to open an emergency call center in the case of another big snowfall. Normally you can call in to the office during business hours to our general phone number: 403.652.2341. Plus, you can call our After-hours Public Works Emergency answering service where you can relay your message to a call-taker, who then passes on your request to the Public Works foreman on duty: 1.888.808.3722. Unfortunately, some callers were extremely abusive to our call-centre and some staff. I just want to put it out there that abusive conduct is not helpful and is quite discouraging. Our roads were cleared within a timeframe a bit longer than the usual 72 hour plan, due to the scale of the event. However, the results were that all 2,200 kms of roads (x 4 passes each = 8,800 kms) were cleared and we’ll try to improve where we heard recommendations. Just to share a personal context story… During this same timeframe, I made several trips to the city. On each occasion, I had to help push vehicles out of the snow in order to get through on their side streets. I also had to shovel a place to park along the street so as not to get stuck.

The Calgary Metropolitan Region Board (CMRB) Heavy Workload: Foothills County Council and Staff are putting in a huge effort as drafting the mandated Growth Plan comes due on March 1, 2021. Multiple meetings take place weekly to discuss the content and policy wording, which will be used in writing the Growth Plan and the Servicing Plan. The Board had asked for an extension due to the challenges of working in the current world affairs; however, only a slight deadline delay was allowed by the Province. Attention to our County-related work suffers as we must participate to defend the County’s future in the region. At this time, much evaluation and contributions are required because the direction of the plan is not at all to the benefit of Foothills County and our residents. We are still hoping for an improvement in what the outcome may hold, but that will be the subject of a follow-up article, at which time I will let you know what the final plan looks like. I have the privilege of representing you and the County Council on the CMRB Board, Land-Use and Servicing Committee and the Governance Committee. This job includes reviewing the long agendas, preparing comments, attending the many meetings and speaking to the County’s position, discussing with Council and working with our Staff to accurately include their expertise from all departments, in particular Planning, Infrastructure and CAO advice. Meeting recordings and information are posted at:

Council Matters: Check out the Foothills County website where you can find detailed records of the topics and public hearings we are addressing at our weekly Wednesday Council Meetings, along with our Agendas and a link to our Council Meetings. You can also see our Meeting Minutes there or read them as published in the Western Wheel:

Foothills Regional Landfill and Resource Recovery Centre: is located on Highway 783 (16 Street E.), 5.5km south of Highway 7, 5km north of Highway 543. Phone: 403.938.5224. Regular landfill hours are 8:30am to 4:30pm Monday to Saturday, closed on Sunday and holidays. Services include: garbage, recycling, hazardous waste, etc. For all the details and costs, visit:

Priddis Transfer Station: is located at 264 St. W. & 178 Ave. (Priddis Greens Drive); open on Tuesday and Saturday from 10:00am to 4:00pm. Phone 403.931.3266. Garbage bags can be purchased at the Priddis transfer station for $2 per bag.

Foothills Salvage and Recycling Society (Salvage Centre): is located at the FoothillsLRRC. Phone 403.648.3764.

Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 9:00am to 4:00pm (closed first Wednesday of the month). If you can’t use it, perhaps someone else could? There is no fee to leave good reusable items at the Salvage Centre. Donations accepted. For more information, visit:

Best Regards, Councillor Suzanne Oel
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