File photo

Lakefront residents ‘need to be reminded’ about public access

Ponoka County discusses promises of public access at Meridian Beach

Ponoka County’s reeve believes some residents need to have a greater regard for the public’s right to beach access.

Reeve Paul McLauchlin reacted with distaste when Coun. Doug Weir said he has received calls from some Meridian Beach residents wanting a gate at the entrance to the development.

“I got calls from some individuals in the area that Meridian Beach is polling its citizens about putting a gate on the main entrance,” said Weir.

McLauchlin noted the Meridian Beach project was only made possible through an agreement to maintain public access.

“Part of the problem is that whole development was predicated on the promises made about public access,” McLauchlin said.

“I think there are a lot of new people there who need to be reminded of the promises that were made about those public facilities. I know people who have tried to use those beaches have been harassed.

“There seems to be an attitude issue among some out there. I think those who started the development made those offers in good faith, but that there has been a change and (those residents) need to be reminded of that public access.”

The county’s fire chief, Dennis Jones, was asked his opinion, and he said he is not in favour of gated communities.

“I don’t think there is a public service that likes them,” he said, referring to emergency responders.

He cited the nearby Raymond Shores development as an example of a gated community.

“I go out annually to test the lock box and the key. It works 90 per cent of the time. But, there are instances when we have to go assist EMS and, depending on the nature of the incident, every second counts.

“The residences aren’t occupied all of the time, and if the gates freeze, the minutes it takes to get in can determine whether or not people or the building can be saved. And that liability can come back on us as to why we didn’t get there sooner.”

beachesPonoka County

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RCMP investigate possible drowning at Pigeon Lake: Man and woman found dead on shore

Bodies recovered from Pigeon Lake’s northeastern shores.

Red Deer Region Highland Dancing Association to participate in national dance-a-thon

Central Albertan dancers have missed performing during the COVID-19 pandemic, says the… Continue reading

Maskwacis teen charged in 10-year-old boy’s death

The RCMP Major Crimes Unit have laid a manslaughter charge against a 13-year-old boy from Maskwacis.

Still no mandatory masks in Red Deer

While a growing number of Alberta communities have made masks mandatory, the… Continue reading

Cast your votes for Best of Red Deer

The Advocate’s Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are back. Community… Continue reading

Quebec festivals organizers look to innovate as restrictions loosened

Montreal has been having its quietest summer in recent memory, as COVID-19… Continue reading

COVID-19 outbreaks over in federal prisons, staff preparing for ‘new normal’

COVID-19 outbreaks in Canada’s federal prisons have been declared over, and staff… Continue reading

Canada to match donations to Lebanon relief

OTTAWA — The federal government will match all individual donations from Canadians… Continue reading

Protests in Beirut amid public fury over massive blast

BEIRUT — Police fired tear gas and clashed with demonstrators in Lebanon’s… Continue reading

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $10 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the $10 million jackpot… Continue reading

Biden risks alienating young Black voters after race remarks

WASHINGTON — Joe Biden’s controversial remarks about race this week risk alienating… Continue reading

Most Read