The Town of Millet council met with representatives of ATCO at their regular meeting Apr. 11 to examine the franchise agreement between the two organizations.
Mayor Tony Wadsworth welcomed ATCO Pipelines and Liquids representatives Todd Phipps and Blair Bishop to the meeting. Wadsworth said he’d gone through the franchise agreement with a fine toothcomb and had a few questions.
Wadsworth said the town often sees agreements or contracts from large corporate entities and an impression is sometimes given that they must be signed with no other option.
Wadsworth noted he found a mistake in the franchise agreement. He also was curious about changes from the previous franchise agreement.
The mayor said he found a four-page document on ATCO’s website that explained changes, and Wadsworth encouraged ATCO to include the pages with franchise agreements in the future.
The mayor went on to state it seems the new franchise agreement’s major change seems to be that ATCO projects in Millet will either be “major projects” or everything else and that major projects are described as those valued at over $100,000.
Phipps said ATCO will always provide information on all projects regardless of dollar value.
Wadsworth also asked about the wording on 24-hour service and suspected gas leaks. He also noted the wording now includes the wording “make safe any suspected leak outside customer property.”
Both Phipps and Bishop said ATCO does investigate virtually any report of a gas smell or leak and that the wording in question actually means going a step further because they don’t just look, they make safe.
“We’re going to respond to everything,” said Phipps. “That’s what we do.”
Phipps said ATCO gets reports that turn out later to be trucks passing through town or a canister in a landfill, but they have to be investigated. “We can’t afford to not respond.”
The mayor also noted the franchise agreement doesn’t necessarily commit to meeting with town council every year. Bishop responded that ATCO likes to meet with councils, but some councils don’t necessarily want to meet with ATCO every year. “If you want to see us more often, you can,” said Bishop.
Wadsworth asked about a new gas line for Millet’s newest subdivision. Bishop responded that after a request is made to ATCO it could take 4 to 6 months for completion, but could be finished more quickly depending on various factors.