Clive village council hears fire dept. has heavy workload

·4 min read

Clive village council heard their fire department has been very busy over the past month responding to grass fires. The report of the Clive fire chief was made at the May 8 regular meeting.

Clive Fire Chief Steve Zaytsoff provided councillors with an update on the department’s activities of late. He began his report by noting the first quarter of the year was rather quiet, but that wouldn’t last.

Zaytsoff stated that over roughly the past month or so the fire department has responded to 14 calls in 18 days, which is a record for the department. Of those 14 calls, 12 were grass fires.

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The fire chief noted the department has been getting a lot of on the job training when it comes to grass fires and members have learned a lot about such call-outs.

He noted that it’s possible some members of the Clive fire department could be deployed to fight wildfires in other parts of Alberta. “We may or may not get deployed,” said Zaytsoff.

During his report Zaytsoff made the point that firefighting equipment useful for grass fires is a bit different than standard bunker gear, which is too heavy in those situations.

Mayor Lucy Henry observed the Clive Fire Dept. must be a great organization because it has very good retention of members. Zaytsoff responded the Clive department is always on the look-out for new members and he hopes an upcoming open house will help attract some local people to the department.

Zaytsoff stated the department currently has 16 members, down slightly from the 20 to 21 that’s typical. Ideally, Zaytsoff stated the department would have 25 members.

Mayor Henry added that the Clive community is very grateful for everything the fire department does.

The fire chief noted that currently there is no fire ban in the Village of Clive, but hot and dry weather seems to be in the forecast. “There is hot weather coming so I don’t think we’re out of the woods yet,” said Zaytsoff.

He added that residents should practice fire prevention as blazes can start from a number of different sources, including burn houses, vehicles exhaust, burn piles and many others.

Mayor Henry stated it was important to remind residents that firefighting costs are passed along to the property owner and are usually charged a minimum of $750 per hour, so that’s another reason to practice fire prevention.

Cost of living

Councillors unanimously approved a cost of living (COL) pay increase for village staff of four per cent. Councillors read a memo prepared by Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Carla Kenney stating no COL was granted to village staff in 2020 and 2021; staff received a 3.2 per cent COL last June.

Mayor Henry noted surrounding municipalities such as Lacombe County granted their staff a four per cent COL.

Coun. Tracy Hallman stated she was in favour of granting the four per cent COL because the village has quality staff and the village doesn’t want to lose them.

All’s well?

The CAO noted in her regular report village staff, including the fire chief, met with two local youths involved with a fire incident said to have occurred on April 24.

Kenney reported the alternative measures were deemed successful, “...youth understand consequences of their actions and have agreed to perform community fire service.”

Village complaints

Kenney noted some complaints the village office recently received.

She began by noting the village office received four written complaints and five verbal inquiries about the municipal flagpole project that is linked to First Nations and Metis reconciliation.

The CAO noted the complaints were addressed on social media.

The village received two reports of inappropriate off-highway vehicle (OHV) use in the municipality. Kenney stated the parents involved were contacted and the situation was dealt with.

Village staff received one complaint of discoloured water.

Lastly, the village office received a complaint of inappropriate use of a dog whistle which was forwarded to the animal control department. Apparently this complaint involves a neighbour dispute.

Another delay

The CAO’s regular report included the note that the village’s official hook-up to the Hwy. #12/21 Water Commission has been delayed again until mid-June.

The party’s over

As councillors perused the monthly Blackfalds RCMP report it was noted that on April 21 police received a complaint about a large, noisy group of people located in Lacombe County.

RCMP attended the location in question, spoke to the people involved and broke up the party.

Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, East Central Alberta Review

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