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Information pamphlet included in Cote RM tax notices

Receiving their 2015 tax notices this week, Cote RM ratepayers will be seeing a pamphlet of information which council considers to be very important.

Receiving their 2015 tax notices this week, Cote RM ratepayers will be seeing a pamphlet of information which council considers to be very important.

Issues discussed in the pamphlet include fi re charges, spraying of ditches, garbage, the Runnymede Hall and the importance of obeying posted road signs, Reeve Jim Tomochko said last week during the regular meeting of council.

When the Kamsack fi re department sends firefighters and equipment to a rural location, the RM gets billed and the RM in turn bills the landowner. Tomochko explained, adding that if the bill is not paid, the cost is added to the landowner’s taxes.

“Make sure you carry adequate insurance,” he said. “Many people do not have enough insurance and at $750 an hour, the cost adds up quickly.” “Please check with your insurance company to ensure you have enough coverage as these charges quickly tally over $10,000.”

Sherry Guenther, the administrator, said that to date in 2015, the fire brigade attended at least six fires in the RM, which cost from $1,300 to $5,000 to fight.

Council will be enforcing its bylaw which prohibits landowners from spraying herbicides in such a manner that they drift onto municipal property, including ditches along municipal roads, he said. Sometimes the spraying is accidental, but often it is intentional, with spraying equipment leaving ruts in the ditches thereby causing difficulty for the mowers.

When the ditches are sprayed, the grasses are killed, but the thistle and other weeds return, and the grasses don’t, he said.

Council members indicated that when tending the road allowances, each road is considered separately and councillors are aware that the majority of ratepayers want to see preservation of natural habitat as much as possible.

Councillors referred to the RM’s bylaw regarding excavation or damage on roads which stipulates that “no person shall make any excavation, remove trees and or plough a municipal road or road allowance or portion thereof in the municipality except by written permission of council (and) no person shall damage or destroy any portion of the municipal road allowance by any means.”

Regarding the garbage collection bins located in the RM, council members said that the service continues to be abused.

“Because of our security cameras, we have photos of people, who are not authorized to use our bins, dumping garbage, and of people who scatter the garbage rather than dispose of it correctly,” a councillor said, adding that council is prepared to contact those people with instructions to clean up their messes or they will be charged.

“This is a friendly warning,” he said. “But if this continues, we will be forced to lay charges.”

Guenther said she wished to remind ratepayers that the refuse transfer station near Runnymede is open the third Saturday of the month, when garbage not suitable for the bins, can be deposited.

At the transfer station, the RM will accept, at no charge: “clean wood and brush, contaminated wood, asphalt shingles, plastics (except oil and chemical jugs), appliances and scrap metals and concrete material. All materials collected at the transfer station site are for temporary collections only.”

Council commends the group of volunteers who have been responsible for the improvements made at the Runnymede Hall and adjacent playground area, Tomochko said. It looks great.

An Internet webpage has been developed for the RM, Guenther said, adding that more information will soon be added to the basic information that is already listed. It is located at

“People must obey posted signs,” Tomochko said, explaining that difficulties have arisen when motorists do not obey the signs. The old Highway No. 8, south of Kamsack is posted as “road closed” because the bridge across the Assiniboine River is damaged. “Obey the sign.”

The information brochure says that the RM is seeking landowners interested in being appointed as poundkeepers and that the municipality must provide sources of water for firefighting services. Persons with water sources that can be accessed for fire fighting, are asked to contact the RM office.