The County of Grande Prairie won’t be giving any financial help to a group of homeowners in Wedgewood facing sloping issues. The four landowners again approached council last week, wanting something to be done to save their homes from falling into Bear Creek.
When the subdivison was approved in 1994, the County explains that the land titles came with a warning that certain steps would be needed before they were developed. Those included making sure they had a wide enough setback, didn’t install underground irrigation systems, and avoided disrupting existing vegetation.
In a statement, Reeve Leanne Beaupre says, “many of the specific instructions in the caveat that could have mitigated the risk were not followed by past and current landowners.” A recent investigation by the County also found that steps they took on their own have created further problems.
The issue has been brought before County council since 2012, and in 2015, was brought to County council in 2015, it offered to pay half of the costs of a geotechnical engineering study. However, the offer was rejected, and the landowners tried to fix the land erosion problem themselves.
The investigation done by the County in 2016 concluded that their actions also increased the cost of stabilizing the land. Council maintains they have no legal obligation to help any further and it would be unfair for taxpayers to foot the bill.
“Council understands the landowners in this situation have undergone financial and personal hardships dealing with this issue, and wishes them well in the future,” adds Beaupre.