Statement from the RMWB’s Deputy Chief Administration Officer
By Kevin Scoble, Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo
As this community continues to deal with the aftermath of a devastating catastrophe, the municipality recognizes the pressure and hardship that residents are facing, particularly those who have lost homes.
With an eye to the future, Administration is working as quickly as possible to create a safe, efficient and effective method of issuing demolition permits, which are required to undertake clean-up, hauling and disposal from fire affected areas. In the face of the potential safety hazards and logistical challenges presented by the scale of the clean-up needed, we ask that the public continues to be patient while this method is developed.
The lessons learned at Slave Lake have been very valuable in Wood Buffalo, but as a result we have had to take more time to prepare for clean-up.
To effectively carryout the clean-up of affected areas, Administration has combined three permits for demolition/clean-up, debris hauling and landfill disposal, simplifying the application process for residents.
We have committed to a 48 hour turnaround of permits on all complete applications, however we may not meet these deadlines immediately, and we will work hard to reach that goal quickly. The permitting and clean-up process being implemented is ultimately expected to speed up the clean-up of the affected areas.
Chief among our concerns are safety hazards, both hazards within the fire affected areas, as well as hazards associated with the transportation of debris from those properties. These safety issues must be mitigated properly before demolition begins and our method will address those issues.
Information packages have been developed to guide individuals applying for demolition permits and will be available on the Planning & Development website by July 4.
Administration has also moved to prepare for the increase in debris removal that will be required. The Landfill will operate at 16 hours a day, moving up to 24 hour operation to meet the pace of clean-up operations. A third landfill scale has been acquired and will be used solely for debris loads, to speed the process of demolition.
While we work to develop the best approach for residents to take the next step forward in recovering from this devastating event, we thank you for your continued patience and strength. For questions about your permit application or the requirements for applying, please contact Planning & Development at 780-799-8695 or firstname.lastname@example.org.