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Lacombe County: Fire Permit Season Begins March 1 – Have you got yours?

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9 minute read

February 26, 2019

Fire Permit Season Begins March 1: Have you got yours?

Lacombe County reminds people that permit requests are free and easy to submit online, through the “myLacombeCounty” app and in person.

(Lacombe, Alberta, February 26, 2019) Lacombe County reminds ratepayers that fire permit season starts on March 1, 2019. In 2017, permit season was moved up a month – starting March 1 rather than April 1 – in response to changing environmental conditions, including drier spring conditions.

“This winter has not brought a lot of snow to Lacombe County and as a result, spring conditions will likely be drier. This was evident in 2018 as well, with an early fire ban put in place by the end of last April,” said Drayton Bussiere, Lacombe County Fire Chief. “Residents are also encouraged to check on any controlled burns performed outside of permit season, as larger burns can smolder through the winter and reignite as it warms up. By complying with the fire permit process and by using safe burning practices, all Lacombe County residents can help us keep our County safe throughout the season.”

Burning without a fire permit can result in a hefty fine.

Under Lacombe County’s Fire Protection Policy, anyone found burning without a permit will be required to pay for the fire department response fees. A flat rate of $300 will be charged for responses to a fire when a person is in contravention of the Forest and Prairie Protection Act for failure to have a fire permit or any other provision of the Act and fire suppression is not required.

“It’s about public safety and burning responsibly,” said Bussiere. “Fire permits are free of charge and easy to obtain, yet we continue to have situations where people don’t take out a permit and can be charged under the bylaw, the intent here is not to generate revenue but to ensure the safety of all Lacombe County residents and their neighbours.”

The past several years have seen many producers brush lands and burn the brush during the winter months. It is very important to remember to check these piles as they can smolder for many months, and can be rekindled by wind. Combine this with dry spring conditions and the resulting fires can be disastrous.

Fires that are started by rekindled brush piles are your responsibility and you can also be charged for the fire response. Should a Fire Department respond to a fire for which a permit has not been issued, or if a permit has been issued and the permit holder contravenes any of the conditions of the permit, the property owner will be assessed costs at the following rates:

• fire truck – $500 per hour
• water truck – $300 per hour
• rapid response unit/mini pumper – $300 per hour
• equipment van – $300 per hour
• equipment other than fire apparatus – Lacombe County cost
• personnel other than fire department members – Lacombe County cost

Beginning on March 1, 2019, online fire permits can be submitted from the Lacombe County website homepage (www.lacombecounty.com), and through the “my Lacombe County” app (Apple users). People are also able to request permits in person at the Lacombe County Office, or by calling 403-782-8959.

Frequently Asked Questions

When do you require a fire permit?

The Forest and Prairie Protection Act prohibits the lighting of an outdoor fire, excluding an attended outdoor camp fire which has been set for cooking or warming purposes, between March 1 and October 31 each year, on land in a permit area, unless the person is a holder of a subsisting fire permit.
The Forest and Prairie Protection Act states that no person shall:

  1. a)  light an outdoor fire without first taking sufficient precautions to ensure that the fire can be kept under control at all times, or
  2. b)  light an outdoor fire when weather conditions are conducive to a fire readily escaping out of control, or
  3. c)  fail to take reasonable steps to control a fire for the purpose of preventing it from spreading unto land otherthan his own, or
  4. d)  deposit, discard or leave any burning matter or substance in a place where it might ignite other matter andresult in a fire.

How can you obtain a permit?

Beginning on March 1, online fire permits can be submitted from the Lacombe County website homepage (www.lacombecounty.com) and from the new “my Lacombe County” app. Permits can also be requested in person at the Lacombe County Office, or by calling 403-782-8959.

What you need to know

In Lacombe County, fire permits are required during the fire season, which starts March 1st and ends October 31st each year, but can be extended if the risk or danger of wildfire exists.

Before lighting any fire, a permit holder must take precautions to ensure that the fire is kept under control at all times. The following rules apply to all permits issued in Lacombe County:

  • A fire permit is valid only for the period that it is issued for.
  • Upon issuing a permit, the County may specify any special fire control condition that, in their discretion, isimportant to the safety of the county residents.
  • The fire must be set at the time and place indicated on the permit.
  • The number of fires set at one time and minimum equipment needed may be specified on the permit.
  • Anyone who sets a fire under the authority of a permit must:

o Have a the permit at the fire site
o Produce and show the permit to a County employee on request
o Keep the fire under control, and
o Extinguish the fire before expiration, or upon cancellation of the permit, or obtain a renewal.

What can you burn?

Burnable debris includes: Prohibited debris includes:

  • Brush and fallen trees
  • Used power and telephone poles that do notcontain preservatives
  • Wood or wood products not containingpreservatives
  • Solid waste from tree harvesting
  • Straw, stubble, grass, weeds, leaves, and treeprunings
  • Solid waste from post and pole operations thatdoes not contain wood preservatives
  • Animal manure
  • Pathological waste (waste from human healthcentres)
  • Wood or wood products containing woodpreservatives
  • Waste materials from construction sites
  • Rubber, including tires
  • Plastic, including baler twine
  • Oil
  • Containers that held pesticides or any otherchemicals
  • Plastic or rubber coated materials, includingcopper wire.

Special provisions for stubble burning

A Stubble Burning Permit is required throughout the year prior to burning the stubble or swath of any crop. A field inspection will be required prior to the issuance of a permit. Phone the Agricultural Fieldman at 782-8959 a few days in advance for inspection arrangements. Stubble Burning Permits may only be obtained at the County office from the Manager of Environmental and Protective Services or the Agricultural Fieldman

Remember to recycle

Many items that you may consider burning can be recycled: Plastics, paper, cardboard and metal materials, used oil, tires and beverage containers, along with many other items. Call the Recycle Info Line at 1-800-463-8320 for local information or visit the Lacombe Regional Waste Services Commission website (www.lrwsc.ca).

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Justice

Liberals withdraw bill’s assault-style firearm definition, promise more consultation

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OTTAWA — The federal Liberals have withdrawn an amendment to their gun bill aimed at enshrining a definition of banned assault-style firearms.

They cite “legitimate concerns” about the need for more consultation on the measure.

Opposition M-Ps and some firearm advocates applauded the move, while a prominent gun-control group calls it a victory for misinformation about the now-pulled amendment.

The government’s guns bill introduced a controversial new definition of an assault-style weapon and the amendment would have defined what kind of firearms should be banned in Canada and added dozens of new semi-automatic rifles and shotguns to the list.

Opponents said the measure unfairly targeted many commonly used rifles and shotguns.

The Liberals were also under pressure from many of their own members to change or withdraw the definition of guns being banned.

Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino said in a written statement posted to Twitter that the government had committed to coming up with “a clear, standard definition of what constitutes an assault-style firearm.”

He says this is an emotional issue, and Canadians are counting on us to get it right.

Mendicino adds more discussions, including with Indigenous communities, are crucial.

MPs from all three main opposition parties expressed relief that the amendment was withdrawn, though the Liberals were still under heavy criticism for trying to push it through in the first place.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre declared his party’s efforts to be the sole reason the Liberals pulled the amendment.

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Lifestyle

Michigan man says son, 6, ordered $1K in food from Grubhub

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CHESTERFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan man says he was left with a $1,000 bill after his 6-year-old son ordered a virtual smorgasbord of food from several restaurants last weekend, leading to a string of unexpected deliveries — and maybe a starring role in an ad campaign.

Keith Stonehouse said the food piled up quickly at his Detroit-area home Saturday night after he let his son, Mason, use his cellphone to play a game before bed. He said the youngster instead used his father’s Grubhub account to order food from one restaurant after another.

The boy’s mother, Kristin Stonehouse, told The Associated Press on Thursday that Grubhub has reached out to the family and offered them a $1,000 gift card. The company also is considering using the family in an online promotional campaign, she said. Grubhub officials did not immediately respond to a message from the AP seeking comment.

Keith Stonehouse said he was alone with his son while his wife was at the movies when Mason ordered jumbo shrimp, salads, shawarma and chicken pita sandwiches, chili cheese fries and other foods that one Grubhub driver after another delivered to their Chesterfield Township home.

“This was like something out of a ‘Saturday Night Live’ skit,” Keith Stonehouse told MLive.com.

He added: “I don’t really find it funny yet, but I can laugh with people a little bit. It’s a lot of money and it kind of came out of nowhere.”

Keith Stonehouse said his son ordered food from so many different places that Chase Bank sent him a fraud alert declining a $439 order from Happy’s Pizza. But Mason’s $183 order of jumbo shrimp from the same restaurant went through and arrived at the family’s house.

Stonehouse said it took the arrival of a few orders of food for him to realize what was going on. By that time, there was nothing he could do to stop the orders from coming.

Kristin Stonehouse told the AP that Mason is extremely intelligent and has been reading since he was 2 1/2 years old.

“He’s very smart,” she said. “He’s not your average 6-year-old.”

She said her husband had just used the Grubhub app on his phone to order dinner before she left and probably just left the app open. She said her son took the phone, hid in the basement and proceeded to order his feast.

She said she and her husband had a talk with Mason on Sunday morning and told him what he did was akin to stealing.

“I don’t think he grasped that concept at first,” she said.

To drive the point home, she and her husband opened up Mason’s piggy bank and pocketed the $115 he had gotten for his birthday in November, telling him the money would go to replenish their accounts. That didn’t seem to faze the boy.

“Then he found a penny on the floor and said he could start all over again,” she said.

Keith Stonehouse said most of the food went into the family’s refrigerators. He said he also invited some neighbors over to eat some of it.

He said he’s heard of things like this happening to other parents, but not at the level he experienced last weekend. He recommends making sure important apps are not readily available for children to click on when they’re using a parent’s phone. He said he’s changing his password.

“I knew this could happen, but you just don’t think your kid is going to do something like this. He’s definitely smart enough, I just didn’t expect it,” Keith Stonehouse said.

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