Cyr asks farmers to write him with weed complaints
MLA for Bonnyville-Cold Lake Scott Cyr addressed Municipal District (MD) of Bonnyville Council on Wednesday morning in response to a letter the MD had written Mr. Cyr in regards to spraying the weeds along the ditches of the Provincial highways. While addressing Council, Cyr stated an approach he is hoping to use, in partnership with the MD to address the weed issues.
“If the MD comes across any farmers spraying weeds in the (Provincial lyrics owned) ditches, while they are spraying their fields, I would encourage the MD to get the farmers to write my office. I’ll collect a few of those letters and I’ll send them to the Minister.” Cyr has noted in the past that personal letters work best when lobbying the government, being able to put a real person with a real story is more moving than stock letters or mass signature campaigns.
Cyr recognized the weed problem is not a new issue for the MD who has held annual weed spraying programs for a number of years. The MD is responsible for MD roads, however does not spray Provincial highways.
The Provincial Government acts on a complaint basis, so unless there’s a complaint from farmers, the Government does not typically spray for weed on Provincial highways. Cyr and the MD would like the Province to recognize the noxious weed problem and assist farmers in cost and control of the weeds.
“It sounds like this is something that has been moved, on several different levels, by several different people. Unless we start getting letters of support for this, in a group, we’re probably not going to see any real movement on this front.” Cyr notes that he doesn’t expect a lot of letters this year since it is past peek weed season, “I imagine next year as the weeds come in, that’s when we’re going to see a lot of the complaints come in.” Cyr asked that any letters or complaints that come in to forward it to him.
“Right now, we only have MDs that are sending in letters of support, we need to start getting constituents,” states Cyr. “If we can get half a dozen or a dozen farmers to write and add pictures. Take pictures of the noxious weeds on their property.” Cyr adds that long grass in the ditch on the Provincial highways is causing problems as well and asks anyone who notices too long grass to write his office.
Scott Cyr’s mailing address: 4428 50 avenue Bonnyville, AB T9N 1B6
*an earlier version of this article stated “area highways” not Provincial highways. LCN has corrected this and notes the problem is with ditches on Provincially owned Highways.