The agenda for the meeting was approved on motion by Rod Wendorff and carried.
- The Minutes of the September 13, 2021 board meeting were approved on motion by Craig Palmer and carried.
- O&M Report and AIM Project Update:
Cody Heggie showed a slide presentation of the work performed over the past month.
We started RS4 pipeline on September 14 and are estimating completion by the 1st or 2nd week in November. The crew has averaged installing 71 meters of pipe per day thanks to Cody and the crew’s hard work.
The 9 mile & north pipeline project will commence once RS4 is completed. Currently, Syncore is boring through highway 52. Pipe has been ordered and we expecting to receive the first shipment of pipe within the last 2 weeks of November. The remaining pipe will be received in January.
- Staffing Update:
Jason reported the timeline to fill the vacant ditch rider position. In late winter (February/March) the position will be advertised, followed by an interview process in April. The new hire will start mid-April/beginning of May.
- Irrican – Kelvin Kado reported:
The current bank account balance is $9,444,321.29 and the investment balance is $4,919,689.16.
We are waiting on a report from SMRID on the 40-mile solar income and pumping expenses.
The next Irrican board meeting is scheduled for October 21, 2021 at 1:30 pm.
The solar arrays are all completed. New power utility contracts with Ridge Utilities are in place. The contracts for the two pump stations changed to 24 cents per kw on October 10th. The office solar array will remain on the same 8.2 cent per kw contract all year long. The solar array at 7-1 pump site is currently down due to power switches being burned out.
R7-1 pumps are in need of more repairs, but the pump fund is at $(11,000). The RID will need to charge R7-1 irrigators a surcharge to recovery these funds. R8-2 has adequate funds on hand, but a fixed energy cost and pump fund will be established for Household Purposes Agreement irrigators.
We are continuing to review the power charge changes to R7-1 and R8-2 irrigators resulting from the new solar arrays. A notice and an updated agreement will be sent to irrigators by spring for their acknowledgement and signatures. Possible meeting with all land owners on the pipelines could be held in the spring.
The annual billings were sent out to irrigators with only a few land changes being missed. They were missed due to not getting updated titles. Land titles are 2 to 3 months behind in getting titles updated. We are correcting as we become aware of needed changes.
We have updated several office IT items. We ordered 2 new printers: 1 to replace an existing one that is worn out and a new one for the board room. We also ordered a new desktop computer to replace a 6 year old existing machine that is wearing out.
- Water 2021 Usage/Forecast – Jason reported:
Jason presented a slide show highlighting the headworks and SMRID reservoir levels. All are low and we are looking for a good snow pack over the winter to replenish them.
Our water usage this year was as follows:
(These numbers are preliminary. Actual numbers will be presented in our annual report)
* Estimated at this time
It was an exceptionally dry year so we anticipated using more water in 2021. Our reservoirs held up to the demand. The long-term forecast indicates warm, moist air from the pacific will bring snow to the mountains. It also calls for large temperature swings with periods of very cold and warm.
- Common Carrier Agreement Update –Jason reported:
Jason reported SMRID and TID have had their vote for amalgamation. The vote was conducted via mail in ballots, which will be tallied at the end of this week. Until the amalgamation is completed, SMRID is holding off on discussing the main canal agreement.
- AIM Projects Update & Irrigating Alberta Inc. update – Jason reported:
The RID has submitted 2 progress certificates for the RS4 project. Certificate 1 totals $19,428.28. Certificate 2 totals $275,242.18. The Alberta government portion and CIB loan will return $235,736.61 to the RID.
We anticipate this project will cost more than the budgeted amount. More details on this will be presented as the project progresses.
9 Mile & North
The crossing of highway 52 is underway. Completing this crossing now will allow our crew to seamlessly move from RS4, once it is completed, to the 9 Mile & North project.
Gravity Pipeline System (“GPS”)
We are waiting for a media announcement from the Government to announce the GPS. In the meantime, we are allowed to explain the project to our irrigators. As such, a letter has been prepared from the Board to irrigators that will be affected by the GPS. The letter will be mailed out next week. The letter is intended to help irrigators plan for the future.
Irrigating Alberta Inc. (“IAI”)
We had an IAI board meeting on September 23, 2021. IAI hired Kristien Renuld to manage IAI.
- Cross Coulee Pipeline Review – Jason reported:
Jason Miller and Darin Wilde had a zoom meeting with SMRID to discuss adding an outlet structure on Cross Coulee. SMRID was very supportive and was willing to assist and work with the RID. SMRID advised RID of several regulator requirements that would be required to add an outlet structure to Cross Coulee. They advised that an outlet structure off of the main canal near Cooper’s drop would be significantly easier.
Darin will begin the detailed design process so that the project can undergo construction in the 2022-2023 construction season.
- New Round of Acres Updated – Jason reported:
Applications have been steadily coming into the office. The next board meeting will be set aside to focus primarily on the allocation of this year’s available acres.
- Old Raymond Monument:
The board discussed several options for the monument.
On motion by John McKee and carried, the Board approves spending up to $2,000 on a monument to be donated to the Town of Raymond to mark the “Green Strip”(the old Raymond Main Canal).
- Directors’ Items:
There were no director’s items.
- 7-1/8-2 Pump Station Upgrades – Jason reported:
7-1 Pump Station
7-1 pump station had electrical issues throughout the 2021 operating season. At the end of the season a small fire occurred within the panel, which melted some of the components. The solar array had to be turned off because the components in the panel were unsafe. Replacement parts have been ordered so that we can begin producing power again.
All of these problems underscore how the electrical panel for these pumps need to be updated and fixed. We obtained 1 quote to completely redo the electrical panel and upgrade the system to an automatic system. The quote came in at $78,000. The 7-1 pump fund is in a negative $11,000. Jason suggested we obtain new quotes for simply updating the panels to manually turn the pumps on and off. The board agreed and asked for quotes for the next board meeting.
8-2 Pump Station
The 8-2 pump station is pretty good shape, but the system has expanded and the pumps struggle to meet water demand. A quote was obtained to add another pump to the site for $25,000. In addition, adding an automatic system would cost an additional $20,000. The 8-2 pump fund has a balance of $41,000. The board determined to just add another pump; however, before proceeding Jason will obtain additional quotes to compare to the current quote.
- Equipment Review – Jason reported:
The cat 326 is working great. The crew is very happy with the machine and it has contributed to our increased pipelining efficiency.
Side by Side
To improve the usefulness of the side by side and to assist with snow removal in the winter when the equipment is out of the yard at the pipeline site, Jason recommended upgrading the side by side with a plow and related accessories.
On motion made by John McKee and carried, the Board approves purchasing a snowplow and related accessories for the side by side to enable it to clear snow.
The RID purchased 2 GMC Sierra in 2020 for $35,000 each. The RID has received an offer to purchase the trucks for $69,000. The board discussed the offer and the possibility of purchasing new trucks, with the intent to sell them in 1-2 years. They discussed the possibility of selling one GMC now and selling the other in the spring, or once new trucks arrive.
On motion made by John McKee and carried, the Board approves selling the 2020 GMC ditch truck and purchasing 2 F150s.
- AIDA Executive Committee Meeting Summary – Jason reported:
Jason attended an AIDA executive committee meeting on John’s behalf on September 23. Key items from the meeting include:
- AIDA meeting with the gov’t opposition is scheduled to keep them up-to-date on irrigation matters
- The water quality monitoring program is very important to AIDA and helps districts be good stewards of the water
- IDA proposed revisions are to be reviewed by individual districts
- AIDA AGM is tentatively planned for December 9
The board reviewed the proposed IDA amendments and supported the changes.
- Canal Seepage – Jason reported:
There are two canal seepage locations that irrigators have brought to the district’s attention. The RID staff will investigate and suggest ideas to correct these problems.
- Household Purposes Agreements (“HPA’s”):
The following HPA’s were applied for:
- Plan 9813105, Block 1, Lot 7
- Plan 0813984, Block 1, Lot 66
On motion made by Rod Wendorff, and carried, the RID Board approves the HPA agreements as presented.
- Next Meeting Date
The next meeting is set for November 17, 2021.
Motion to adjourn – There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 3:26PM on motion by John McKee.