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Letter: Residents concerned with activity at new LLB fire hall building

Dear Mayor and Council of Lac La Biche County,

We write to you to as neighbors of the previous La Biche Ford Shop that is now being converted to a multi-purpose fire hall. As neighbors of the shop we do not support this conversion and feel there has been no public consultation to the community, and no consultation or notification to the direct neighbors impacted.

We want to bring your attention to our neighborhood, which was once a quiet subdivision with a retail store however has quickly changed to industrial operation which we do not believe belongs surrounded by residential property. We ask the county quickly remove the noisy and unsightly operations and consult with the public what the use of this building and land should be.

Some of our concerns are:

When La Biche Ford operated it was quiet, they pulled vehicles into the shop during business hours 830am-5pm. However now parks staff start as early as 6 am with loud equipment, mowers, trucks that beep when backing up ect. Which is a violations of Lac La Biche County's own bylaw 18-024 (8(1)).

There is a big unsightly dumpster behind the building with no lid, which attracts hundreds of birds, when brought up to a county employee we received the response "you will have to get used to it".  It is now acceptable to convert a retail building to industrial without consultation with the neighbors and when questioned, to be told "get used to it".

The Fire Department is now cutting up vehicles for practice late into the evenings and weekends, doing training, lighting dumpsters on fire to practice spraying them, spraying foam all over the yard with a terrible odor like diesel fuel and chemicals which lasted throughout the weekend.

Does this really need to be in the middle of the community surrounded by homes, what is the impact to our properties to have something so unsightly, are our homes as marketable with a chop shop across the road? Is it safe for the neighborhood children?

There never was a consultation for the use of the building.

We ask you please consult with the community and at a minimum the neighbors about the purchase of the former La Biche Ford, and what the appropriate use is for this building, as well as putting a stop to the noise and unsightly mess.

Yours truly,

Ian Cloutier, Resident