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February 12, 2024
Hay River and the Kátł’odeeche First Nation have signed an agreement to cooperate on a site for a new solid waste facility.
The town says it has virtually no access to land for a new landfill but holds a “shared interest” with KFN, which uses the same existing landfill.
“This is taking steps towards helping with getting our site selection, which most likely will not be town-sited lands but going into commissioner’s land, and ensuring that KFN will still have access for municipal landfill once we take future steps,” said Hay River senior administrator Glenn Smith.
Peter Redvers, representing the Kátł’odeeche First Nation, said the deal allows the First Nation involvement in identifying a new site and ensuring “lands aren’t alienated from inherent Aboriginal use or any existing treaty rights.”
“The town has agreed to involve KFN in each step in the process of narrowing down the site,” he said.
Hay River’s existing landfill “is an old facility,” said Smith, full of decades-old risks from materials dumped in eras when standards weren’t as high, though work in recent years has upgraded it in a bid to prevent the recurrence of a fire like one in 2019 that cost the town more than $1 million.