The motion to get more information on FortisAlberta franchise fees had Bruderheim Town Council split down the middle.
If council implemented the fees, Bruderheim residents would have another monthly cost added to their utility bill (with the amount depending on the resident's consumption). In return, the company would assist the town in adding more lights to the darker areas of town as well as helping with maintenance.
Mayor Karl Hauch, deputy mayor Pat Lee and councillor Len Falardeau voted against the motion at Wednesday's meeting (Sept.19).
"The motion was asking administration to provide information for us in terms of if we wanted to implement the Fortis franchise fee," explained Lee. "The fact is that we tend to have enough fees on our utility bills between our delivery charges and carrying charges and distribution charges, so it becomes quite a bit for the residents to take. So at this time, I don't feel that we should go forward with this fee with Fortis."
Councillors Wayne Olechow, Judy Schueler and George Campbell disagreed.
"There's been a lot of concerns and questions... in regards to safety in the town and some of the areas in town that are really dark. We need to provide that service to them," said Olechow.
The vote came down to a three to three split. In the event of a tie, the motion is defeated.
Olechow said that in the future, they will look at the budget to see if they can find room for adding more lights to the town.
"I'm not sure it will work into this year's budget but it is something that I'll definitely look at for the following year and looking at franchise fees for next year as well."

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