Even though the Town of Drumheller has signed contracts from the Government of Alberta dating back to the 1980's, the government has walked away from any flood mitigation assistance.
"We finally did get a message from Minister Phillips. They are not going to budge, which is directly opposed to what they had originally said when we talked about flood mitigation. They not the NDP, they the Government of Alberta," stated Drumheller's Mayor, Terry Yemen.
"The Government of Alberta is the Government of Alberta, I don't care what party is in power (because) it's still the Government of Alberta. To have the Government of Alberta come back on the municipality and say 'yes we did sign that agreement and yes that is ours 100 percent, now it's not'. That doesn't fair well with me, doesn't fair well with other municipalities and I don't think it would fair well for trading partners or people who want to do business with Alberta. If you can't keep your word to a municipality, it doesn't speak well for the Alberta Government at all," expressed Yemen.
This flood mitigation request has an an impact on other projects that the Town of Drumheller has been trying to finish.
"We had two projects that were approved and we would have liked to have them done for 2016, but because the Alberta Government refused to negotiate, come to the table or to speak to us, we weren't able to go ahead with it. So, now we're going to have to find that funding and we're looking at eight to ten million dollars which is what the Town of Drumheller is going to have to put in and quite frankly, we don't have eight to ten million spare dollars," Yemen outlined.
This is something that the Federal Government can't walk away from, especially in times of need.
"We've had some good discussions with Senator Grant Mitchell, he's opened up some doors for us (and) we've been able to talk to some federal MP's. We've re-asked our MP Kevin Sorenson that this is something the Town of Drumheller needs and we've asked him to start knocking on doors for us and perhaps if the doors aren't answered to kick some doors because we want answers," explained Yemen.
"It's just upsetting when I see the Federal Government writing cheques for all over the world and there's a need here right at home. I want them to look at us and if we don't get anything then we will go right to the Prime Minister and say 'you do have a chequebook and we need some help with out mitigation'."
Although the government isn't doing much right now to help, Drumheller is in better shape than we were in previous flood years.
"We're in better shape than we were in 2005 and we beat off the flood then. We're in way better shape than we were in 2013, we have another million dollars of equipment (like) portable dykes and a lot more pumps. Nobody wants to go through that exercise, but if we were to go through it we are a lot better prepared than we were in the past."