Public Works Update
September 15th, 2022
To the members of the Blood Tribe, my name is Joe Healy I have been your Director of Public Works for nearly 20 years. We understand our road system has always been a concern for the community and I just wanted to share with you the history of how our Roads came to be what they are today.
In the 1950s and ‘60s, our roads were built with an old elevator that basically pulled all the topsoil and clay together creating a basic road system in which you see today. As the elevator created our roads, a grader would follow behind smoothing the roadways (pictured below). In the initial construction process, no ditch cuts were constructed and this created problems with drainage, and back sloping, thus causing what you see today (pictured below). As a direct result, when there is any amount of precipitation, all the topsoil becomes exposed causing severe and deteriorated road conditions.
This issue, combined with the minimal funding that Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) provides, we are only able to gravel up 30 kms per year. In 2001, we did a road needs study on our road system of 1,200 kms and the report said it would cost $11 million to rebuild our entire roadways. The study was updated in 2017, and the new amount increased to $22 million, and increased again today with the price tag is $27 million.
As a result of, we prepared a seven-year work plan to recreate our entire road system, this would include repaving the communities of Moses Lake and Lavern. We are excited to provide more information about this initiative with the members of the Blood Tribe soon. We are hoping to see some funding for this project in the future to provide you with a consistently safer road system. I would like to thank you all for being patient, as community members we also share in your frustration and it is our promise that the Public Works Department will continue to serve the communities of the Blood Tribe to the best of our capability.
Joe L. Healy