ASGA AGM tackles communicating with landowners
By Andrew Snook
January 11, 2017 – Communication is key. This was one of the messages conveyed during the first session of the Alberta Sand & Gravel Association’s 2017 AGM, which took place today at the Marriott River Cree Resort and Casino in Enoch, Alta.
The message came from Alberta Environment and Parks’ Shannon Yacyshyn, one of three panel members from the AEP that discussed some of the Ministry’s recent initiatives related to the aggregate sector.
Yacyshyn said that building strong communications with landowners could help operators avoid unnecessary headaches and future litigation, adding that a significant portion of her workday often involves fielding calls from landowners who have concerns and complaints related to gravel pits operating on their lands. Landowners being unaware of the life cycle of their gravel pits was one of the regular issues.
“There is not a good, clear conversation on what the life of a pit actually is,” she said. “They think they can get in and out in five to 10 years.”
Yacyshyn explained that the life of a pit varies significantly, adding that under the current code that a gravel pit could have an infinite life, depending on the contract that is signed and how long it takes an operator to extract the resources within the land.
Ensuring that landowners are kept up to date with any changes to activities plans is also an important aspect to maintaining a strong operator-landowner dialogue.
Changes to activities plans can include:
- Updated drawings that clearly identify changes/additions;
- Updated security calculation;
- Verification that DP is still current; and
- Current landowner consent.
Yacyshyn added that operators are not fully responsible for creating dialogue with landowners, stating that if an operator has approached them, landowners need to protect themselves by asking the right questions, and by contacting their municipality and the Ministry to keep them informed.
Additional ASGA 2017 AGM coverage:
ASGA welcomes new president
ASGA announces first-ever Awards of Excellence