Bashaw town council supported by resolution a request by an organization that used to be Alberta One-Call that would make it mandatory for under and above ground utilities to be registered with that organization.
Utility Safety Partners (USP), previously Alberta One-Call, may not be as widely known under its new moniker as its previous one but the request it sent to Bashaw council was quite clear, rational and appeared to resonate with councillors.
“USP is proposing a comprehensive provincial damage prevention legislation for buried and above-ground utilities in Alberta,” stated the Dec. 14, 2023 letter signed by President Mike Sullivan.
“The new legislation will enhance safety across the province by creating a comprehensive provincial energy and utility notification system that would require the registration of all critical infrastructure with USP, formerly Alberta One-Call,” stated Sullivan’s letter. “This would include all municipalities in Alberta.
“While the majority of Alberta’s municipalities and industries have registered their utilities with USP, some have not. That poses a safety risk in the province.
“You are receiving this message because your municipality is a registered member of USP, which is a non-profit organization, and we would appreciate your municipality’s support to help us get this important safety legislation passed into law.
“While there are many obvious reasons to support the legislation from a safety perspective, having all organizations registered also delivers administrative and operating cost efficiencies.”
Sullivan went on to state it’s hoped proposed legislation could appear at the legislature this year.
Coun. Kyle McIntosh asked if Bashaw is a member of this organization and Fuller confirmed the municipality does have a contract with USP. She noted the Town of Bashaw does pay a nominal fee to USP for its membership.
Councillors discussed what advantages and disadvantages their support of this proposal could have for the municipality and they agreed there didn’t seem to be any disadvantages.
Councillors unanimously agreed through resolution to support USP’s request as presented in their letter.
By Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Original Published on Jan 10, 2024 at 13:31