News Releases

Kneehill County, AB

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May 9, 2018

News Release

Kneehill County holds the line on Municipal Taxes.

Kneehill County Council is pleased to announce that there will be no increase to municipal taxes in 2018. Although Kneehill County has lost significant assessment, particularly in the oil and natural gas sector, through solid management of our revenue over expenses we remain in a good financial position. Kneehill County has been able to maintain its high level of service to our ratepayers while controlling expenses in areas that have no or minimal impact on our residents.

The County continues to have an excellent road network and there are significant road construction and upgrades planned through this year’s construction season. Many of our residents enjoy the convenience of our rural water lines and Council has dedicated almost $5 million dollars to an upgrade to the Churchill Water System which will improve the service for current users, and allow for expansion to those in the area who have not had the opportunity to connect to a County water line. In 2018 we have been able to expand the Peace Officer Department to provide greater enforcement visibility in our rural areas. Our new Kneehill County Fire Chief will be creating a long term strategy for fire protection for Kneehill County rural and hamlet residents.

2018 will continue to be a great year for Kneehill County and we look forward to hearing from our residents to gain feedback on the services we provide and on our overall direction.

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 For more information, contact Deb Grosfield, Communications  

Kneehill County 403-443-5541 

Kneehill County, AB

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May 3, 2018

News Release

Kneehill County aids the Village of Carbon in Flood Recovery 

At the Special Council Meeting held Thursday, May 3, 2018, Kneehill County Council moved to aid the Village of Carbon in their Flood Recovery and Mitigation, providing $200,000.00 from the Contingency Fund Reserves to assist in repairs and reclamation.

While Kneehill County regularly experiences some measure of flooding from spring run-off every year, 2018’s Overland Flooding event was unprecedented. Late spring snow, combined with frozen ground and rapid snow melt, led to both the Three Hills and Kneehills Creek overflowing their banks, causing widespread damage and prompting numerous road closures. The effects of the flooding proved especially disastrous to the Village of Carbon’s east end.

A main source of Village revenue, at one point Carbon’s East Campground was completely under water. The campsites have been washed out and the area is now covered in a thick layer of silt and debris. The Village’s Ball Diamonds, the swinging pedestrian bridge and the walking paths along the creek have also been destroyed by the flood waters.

While clean-up in Carbon has begun, the total damage and cost of repairs are extensive. As recreation is vital to the Village’s economy, Kneehill County Council is ready to respond and assist in Carbon’s Flood Recovery.

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 For more information, contact Debra Grosfield, Communications  

Kneehill County 403-443-5541 

Kneehill County, AB

PDF VERSION

May 2, 2018

News Release

Kneehill County announces Rural Fire Chief

A new rural fire chief, Daniel Ross, former fire chief of Charlie Lake Fire Department, will be joining the Kneehill County Protective Services Department on May 22, 2018.

Kneehill County Council set the Rural Fire Strategy as one of its primary strategic goals to accomplish in 2018. The fire strategy is a key document which will provide guidance for Council to ensure the protection of Kneehill County residents in regards to a rural-focused fire service.

Dan Ross joined the military out of high school serving 6 years with the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry based out of Victoria, BC and Calgary, AB which included two United Nations Peacekeeping Missions to Croatia. He then became a military firefighter for the remaining 14 years of his military career, including serving one tour in Afghanistan and completing various fire service certifications such as Firefighter Level 2, Hazardous Materials Technician and all four levels of Fire Officer certification as well as a Bachelor Degree in Business.

Dan retired from the military in 2011 and moved into municipal firefighting with Yellowhead County as a Deputy Fire Chief for 9 departments. After 6 years with the YCFD, Dan continued to expand his portfolio by becoming the Manager of Emergency Services and Fire Chief for the Peace River Regional District where he received his Chief Fire Officer Designation, becoming recognized as a member of the International Association of Fire Engineers.

Dan has a daughter in Lethbridge and will be welcoming his first grandchild shortly. When not in the fire station, Dan spends as much time possible camping around Alberta.

Dan is looking forward to the new adventures with Kneehill County and is anxious to start working with our staff and the fire departments of the area.

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For more information contact Debra Grosfield, Communications

Kneehill County 403-443-5541

Kneehill County, AB

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April 24, 2018

 News Release

 Council focuses on County Resident Needs

 Over the course of the last four years, Kneehill County has seen a significant decrease in revenues. This decrease has caused Kneehill County Council to search for budget efficiencies that will help to maintain the quality and level of services that County residents expect. The costs of running the business of Kneehill County have increased each year. The County’s staff have worked hard at minimizing the impacts of the increases by reducing operating budgets and Council has resisted increasing property taxes of our residents for many years.

The provinces’ downloading of greater responsibilities, reductions to our assessment formula by the province, the rising costs of fuel and equipment, the carbon taxes, plus the rising costs of the County’s business operations, have forced Council into some difficult decisions. Most important however, is our declining taxable assessment base.  Since 2013 Kneehill County has seen its overall assessment decline by 25% or approximately $500 million in assessable properties. With our current tax rates this has meant an estimated loss in 2018 of $5.6 million dollars in industrial tax. Combined with the province’s reductions to the assessment formula which resulted in a loss of $1.8 million dollars, Kneehill County is faced with significant revenue losses for the 2018 budget year.

To minimize the effects on Kneehill County residents, Council has determined their focus should be on Kneehill County residents and the services they require, and Council will be implementing policy changes to reflect this new focus. The first step in the new program focus is to announce the cancellation of the Regional Resource Urban Sustainability Grant given annually to our neighbouring towns and villages. The approximately $1 million dollars spent through this grant program will be re-incorporated into the Kneehill County budget to reduce the impact of the economic downturn on County residents, through maintaining existing services and by improving services for residents in targeted areas.

Kneehill County Council recognizes that the loss of the Regional Resource Urban Sustainability Grant will have a negative impact on our neighbouring towns and villages. To help reduce the impact, we have committed to renewing funding of $250,000 total for recreation and other services, provided by our urban neighbours, that are utilized by Kneehill County residents.  Also the cancellation of the Regional Resources Urban Sustainability Grant does not impact the funding provided for other services such as fire protection, emergency management, solid waste and other previously agreed to recreation services.

Kneehill County Council is committed to maintaining and improving the quality of life for County residents and is prepared to make the difficult decisions required to ensure that Kneehill County remains one of the best places to live in Alberta.

For further information and updates, Kneehill County residents are invited to contact the County at 403-443-5541, or visit the Kneehill County website at www.KneehillCounty.com for councillor contacts.

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 For more information, contact Debra Grosfield, Communications  

Kneehill County 403-443-5541 

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Kneehill County, AB

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February 1, 2018

News Release

Carbon Fire Services Resume

Kneehill County is pleased to announce that the Village of Carbon has informed Kneehill County that effective immediately, the Carbon Fire Department has returned to operational status. Kneehill County would like to thank the Town of Drumheller, the Village of Linden, and the Village of Acme Fire Departments for their extra vigilance over the last several days. 

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For more information, contact Debra Grosfield, Communications

Kneehill County, 403-443-5541  

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January 30, 2018

 News Release

 No Interruptions in Fire Services

The Village of Carbon has notified Kneehill County that effective immediately, and until further notice, the Village of Carbon is placing the operational status of the Carbon Fire Department on hold.

Kneehill County has made arrangements with our other municipal partners to ensure continued and uninterrupted fire/emergency services to Kneehill County residents. All other fire services remain on operational status and in the event of an emergency or fire, residents are encouraged to call 911 for assistance.

For further information and updates, Kneehill County residents are invited to contact the County at 403-443-5541, or visit the Kneehill County website at www.KneehillCounty.com. Village of Carbon residents are directed to contact the Village of Carbon office.

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 For more information, contact Debra Grosfield, Communications  

Kneehill County 403-443-5541 

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For Immediate Release – Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Train Derailment south of Huxley, Alberta

A train derailment was called into 911 dispatch around 5:25 pm on Tuesday, October 17th by emergency services for Kneehill County.

The original call was for approximately 25 railcars of an unknown substance which had been tipped off its track just south of the Hamlet of Huxley located just east off of Highway 21 and 6 kilometers north of the Town of Trochu.

First responders from the Trochu Fire Department, Three Hills Fire Department and Kneehill County Emergency Services arrived on scene and noticed there were two lengths of the train that had tipped totaling approximately 67 sea-can container railcars.
Due to the hilly terrain, it was difficult to evaluate the contents of all containers, thus precautionary measures were taken, and three nearby residences were evacuated and roads closed in the immediate area. The residents returned later that night when deemed safe to do so.

There were no reports of injuries that we were made aware of. CN Rail personnel and operations equipment arrived on scene shortly after 6:45 pm to begin clean up and recovery work.

Earlier in the day, Environment Canada issued a wind warning for the Kneehill County area including the hamlets of Huxley and Torrington, and the Towns of Trochu and Three Hills. An investigation into the cause of the derailment is being determined by CN Police and agencies.

For Council contact information, please contact the Kneehill County Office Ph: 403-443-5541 or toll-free 866-443-5541

Archived News Releases

July 11, 2017

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Kneehill County's Farm to Table ASB Tour

On July 26, 2017, Kneehill County presents "From Farm to Table", the 2nd Annual Agricultural Service Board and Culinary Tour. 

The adventure begins at Horseshoe Canyon, with buses departing at 9:00 am to tour the countryside, highlighting the unique business opportunities, innovations in agriculture, and diverse recreation development Kneehill County has to offer. Entrepreneurs looking to expand or diversify their agricultural operation, source products from local producers, or start a tourism operation in Kneehill will witness the County's commercial potential first-hand. 

Planned tour stops will provide a full itinerary of home-grown, informative entertainment, starting with goat cheese, a little taste of Italy just north of Acme, and lunch served with a side of medieval times. Along the route delegates will enjoy the scenic rolling prairie fields, stunning vistas, endless blue skies and rugged rural landscapes that make Kneehill County home. A visit to lush gardens, a trip to a fresh local food store, and a stop to experience some of the County's most breathtaking views will complete the afternoon. 

Winding its way from farm to table, the tour ends back at Horseshoe Canyon where delegates will be treated to a unique long-table culinary experience, a meal showcasing locally-sourced items, prepared by local chefs, and set in the heart of the Canadian Badlands. 

Tickets are limited--get yours today! 

Visit the News/Events page at Kneehill County's website, www.kneehillcounty.com, to purchase. 

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March 10, 2017


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Kneehill County Public Safety Hosts Farm Equipment Discussion 

Kneehill County Public Safety, in collaboration with Alberta Commercial Vehicle Enforcement, hosted a session on Farm Equipment & the Traffic Safety Act at the Acme Community Hall on Thursday, March 9. A crowd of about twenty residents enjoyed coffee and donuts and a chance to chat before the presentation began.

First to speak was Nicole Hornett, a Farm Safety Specialist with Alberta Farm Safety. Dedicated to providing Albertans with resources, awareness education and training, their slogan of “Make it safe, Make it visible,” marries Farm Safety with Traffic Safety, stressing the absolute necessity of both.

Traffic Officers Cody Patton and Claire Wiseman from Alberta Commercial Vehicle Enforcement were next, taking residents through a presentation that clarified the traffic exemptions affecting both farm equipment and commercial vehicles on Alberta roads. A lengthy discussion period followed, allowing attendees the chance to have all their questions answered.

Reiterated throughout the morning, by each presenter, was the emphasis on safety—not enforcement. Kneehill County Peace Officers enjoyed the opportunity to engage with Kneehill County residents, providing them with resources and flags to promote equipment visibility.

With worthwhile, relevant information addressing issues not commonly known, the Farm Exemption and Traffic Safety Act presentation was so well received, both in Acme and at the prior event held in Three Hills, which boasted over fifty attendants, that more information sessions are being planned. In the meantime, residents can download the Farm Exemption handout from Kneehill County’s website, www.kneehillcounty.com.

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For more information contact Debra Grosfield, Communications 

Kneehill County 403-443-5541 

Traffic Exemption Handout


News Release: Kneehill County invests in Horseshoe Canyon Tourism
July 26, 2016


At the May 10, 2016 Regular Meeting, Council moved forward on purchasing the privately owned area icon and tourism draw, Horseshoe Canyon. The land is located at SW 27-28-21-W4M in the southeast part of Kneehill County. The land title was transferred at the beginning of July, making the purchase official.

Council discussed the Horseshoe Canyon Action Plan at the July 26 Regular Council Meeting. Immediate plans consist of making the observation area safer for visitors, as drainage has caused washouts in many areas.

Kneehill County Agriculture and Parks Department continues to work on developing a long term plan to present to Council, including recreation areas, hiking trails and other developments that will support long termeconomic goals of our area.

Reeve Bob Long is excited to have the area under our wing, “Horseshoe Canyon is a gem in our prairie profile, a part of the Canadian Badlands. It’s an important attraction to maintain for our many visitors and residents to enjoy.”

Horseshoe Canyon parking area was originally under Kneehill County control through a long-term lease until the management of the property was turned over to Alberta Parks and Recreation in 1986. When the Province made plans to privatize or close the parking lot area in 1998, Kneehill County entered a partnership with the Town of Drumheller to further promote tourism in the region.

On September 6, 2002, the Horseshoe Canyon Conservation Area was opened by the Nature Conservancy of Canada. Kneehill County re-assumed ownership of the parking lot of the popular tourism stop in 2008, and pavement and bathrooms were added to upgrade the area.

With the full quarter now under ownership and operation of Kneehill County, we will be able to develop the recreation area while working with our neighbours, Nature Conservancy of Canada to the west of the parking area.

For more information on the Nature Conservancy of Canada, please visit their website.



News Release: On The Move
November 13, 2015

With the Kneehill County Administration Building and Medical Clinic taking shape east of the Three Hills Hospital, the domino effect of organizational moves is on the horizon.

The intended completion date for the Kneehill County Administration portion of the building is February 2016. As Administration moves out of their Main Office located at 232 Main Street Three Hills, the Town of Three Hills will prepare its Administration to move into that location, as they have outgrown their existing building as well.

At the same time, the Three Hills Library will move into the old Town of Three Hills municipal office upon renovations.

The region’s physicians will move into their 10,000 square foot wing of the Kneehill County Administration / Medical Clinic office sometime in April. Leaving the existing Three Hills Medical Clinic located at 779 2nd Street North vacant. Discussion has started for the potential move of Kneehill Regional Family and Community Support Services (KRFCSS) and the Seniors Outreach Society to this vacant location. Kneehill County Council has allocated $250,000 from the sale of the existing Kneehill Administration Office to be earmarked for renovations that may be required.

As a region, we are building our future, and working together to share the successes of our partnership. For more information, contact your municipal council.


Other Archived News Releases:

Solar Energy Addition to Building Dec 2015

July 26, 2016

 

PDF Version

 

Kneehill County’s Innovations in Agriculture Summer Tour a Success

 

On July 20th, 2016, Kneehill County’s Agricultural Service Board had the pleasure of hosting their Innovations in Agriculture Summer Tour, where ratepayers were invited to observe and learn about various innovative practices happening within the County.

Attendees began the tour at the newly expanded County shop to showcase the additions that were made to ensure the structure was compliant with chemical storage codes. In addition to the storage unit, measures have been taken to minimize chemical exposure for County employees, which were also highlighted throughout the stop.

The Golden Acres Honey Farm was the second stop on the tour and allowed attendees to become educated on the massive production happening within our County, which provides honey for well-known brands including the “No Name” brand. After a catered lunch at Swalwell Dam, where ratepayers were shown the new Floating Islands and aeration units which were installed to help improve oxygen levels and water quality, the tour continued with a lesson on the nuances of electric fencing and ending the tour with a demonstration on using drones to collect data for variable rate fertilizing.

Ratepayers finished with a roast beef dinner on their return to the Three Hills Rural Hall after an exciting, informative day. Our Ag Service Board did a fantastic job organizing and due to the success, this may become an annual event.  

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For more information contact Debra Grosfield, Communications 

Kneehill County 403-443-5541

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