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Firewood processing facility permit approved

Water Valley/Winchell Lake-area operator applied for permit after Mountain View County received complaint

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - The county’s municipal planning commission has approved a development permit application for a business contractors - firewood processing and sales and accessory building in the Water Valley/Winchell Lake rural neighbourhood.

The approval came by way of motion at the board’s Jan. 5 meeting, held in person and on Zoom.

The 4.99-acre agricultural parcel involved is located two kilometres south of Highway 579 on the west side of Rge. Rd. 52, at NE 15-29-5-5.

“The proposal is to run a small firewood operation, selling split firewood,” administration said in a briefing note to the commission. “They will be using a wood processor within an area identified on the site sketch (submitted with the application) behind the existing dwelling and shop.

“There may be up to two customer visits to the property per day, however most of the firewood sales will be off-site delivery.”

A 600-square foot accessory building has been brought on site, in which approvals are being requested as part of the application, members heard.

“This building will be located west of the existing quonset shop, near the firewood processing building and will be used for equipment storage. A building permit will be required.”

The development permit application was circulated to 29 nearby landowners and the county received no responses, members heard.

“The application was submitted voluntarily after a complaint was received regarding the business starting up without appropriate permits in place. The business, contractors is existing, and this application is the result of a complaint in which the applicant has voluntarily applied for this development permit. As such, a fine has not been recommended with issuance of the permit.”

The applicant told the board that sawdust generated at the site will be kept in bags on a concrete pad.

Administration recommended approval of the permit, which comes with a number of conditions, including that the applicant, landowner and/or operator “shall not generate noise, smoke, odour, steam, dust, fumes, exhaust, vibration, heat, glare or refuse matter considered offensive or excessive to the approving authority” and that sawdust must be controlled at all times.

Another condition added by the board is that the sawdust generated at the site be kept in bags, with up to a maximum of 10 cubic meters allowed to be stored.

The MPC is made up of county councillors and appointed public members. It is the county’s approving authority.

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