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County of 40 Mile looks at housing in Foremost, water in Winnifred

Posted on September 14, 2023 by Ryan Dahlman

By Anna Smith
Commentator/Courier

August 23 may be the last time the County of Forty Mile No. 8 met for the summer, and as such, they certainly had to make it count.

Council received a delegation from Mayor Lorne Buis of the Village of Foremost, seeking collaboration on a shortage of housing available.

“When we want to hire an employee, if they choose to live in the village of Foremost –  because that’s where our home base is – it’s hard to come by houses that are for sale or rent for that matter. So I know, you know, there’s been talk going around about trying to do some development,” said deputy reeve Stacey Barrows.

Buis brought forward the idea of seeking out investors or other streams to bring in development money, and was given consideration.

Council received a delegation from Alberta Sugar Beet Growers, as is common this time of year, for an update on the state of their harvest as they make up a large percentage of irrigated land in the county.

“Another topic we had on the table was, not too long ago, we brought irrigation water to the landowners in Winnifred,” said Barrows. “We had a discussion on that. I think everything is coming together nicely. The water is working; they’ve been watering most of the season. So we kind of got an estimate about what the watering is going to look like, so we can set a price for this season for them.”

A date was also set for the town hall between the 40 Mile Park residents and St. Mary River Irrigation District, which took place Sept. 8 at 1 p.m.

The County is looking to sell off some of their old buildings, and will be looking at getting a real estate agent on the matter.

Lastly, there was further discussion of a collaboration grant that was originally sought by the City of Medicine Hat, for economic development for the region.

“The City of Medicine Hat had applied for it and asked for support from the surrounding municipalities. So that we can collaborate as southeast Alberta, and we had just a little meeting with them, to get to know their new economic development person,” said Barrows. “I look forward to seeing how the County can work with the City of Medicine Hat and other surrounding municipalities to move forward.”

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