ALBERTA

Wildrose Says High River State Of Emergency Should Be Extended

07/10/2013 07:26 EDT | Updated 09/09/2013 05:12 EDT
HIGH RIVER, Alta. - Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith is asking the Alberta government to recall the legislature to extend the state of emergency in High River.

The state of emergency in the town, which is still under water in some areas, is slated to end Friday.

Smith sent a letter to Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths asking that he meet with High River town council to see if they agree to the end of the state of emergency.

If not, she says the Conservatives should call a brief session of the legislature to pass a resolution to extend the state of emergency.

Smith, who represents High River in the legislature, also wrote that she was confident that all MLAs would attend because she says it's the right thing to do for Alberta.

She says she's concerned because about half of the residences in High River have complete access to essential utility services as hot water, electricity and phone service.

Smith also says very few of the High River's businesses are up and running yet.

"While the efforts of our town councillors and the town staff have been exemplary, in some cases truly heroic, many if not all of them are all also experiencing this disaster at a personal level. Their homes and/or businesses are severely impacted.

"The potential removal of the extra manpower and provincewide resources that have gathered in High River is deeply concerning."

Liberal Leader Raj Sherman said his party supports the call for an extension to the state of emergency in High River.

"If they feel they are ready to shoulder their burden without the assistance a provincial state of emergency provides, then it should expire on Friday. If, however, they feel the provincial state of emergency needs to be extended, then the Alberta Liberal Opposition will support such an extension and work with all parties in the legislature to provide such an extension.”

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