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2011 Map of Birch Hills County

Strategic Plan
(PDF Document)

Meeting Schedule

Regular Council Meeting

JULY 09, 2020

Any member of the public wishing to electronically attend the regular council meeting please contact Administration before Wednesday 4:00pm, July 08, 2020.


Dion Hynes
Director of Public Works

Michael Coy
Manager of
Infrastructure Projects

Jim Alexy
Manager of
Infrastructure Maintenance

Tom Morgan
Fire Chief


Birch Hills County

Birch Hills County is located in the Central Peace Region, bordered by the Peace River to the North and the Smoky River to the East. Located within the County are the hamlets of Eaglesham, Peoria, Tangent, Wanham and Watino. Oil and Gas provide the largest sector of employment in the county.


Latest Information for Smoky River / Watino 2020-07-05 10:00 a.m.

Mandatory Evacuation Order Rescinded For Watino

As of 10:15 p.m., June 4, 2020, Birch Hills County has rescinded the Mandatory Evacuation Order and State of Local Emergency for the Hamlet of Watino and surrounding low-lying areas.

The water level on the Smoky River continues to show a decline. The water level has receded over the past 24 hours, but the Smoky River remains high and fast and banks are unstable in many places.

The County’s number one priority is public safety and, as a result, certain localized conditions will apply:

1. Rge. Rd. 242A, North of TWP 782 remains closed to all traffic due to a washout.

2. Rge. Rd. 244 remains closed as Rge. Rd. 243 and TWP 780.5 are still under water.

Residents may return to their homes but must take precautions as listed below:

1.   Stay several meters away from the river’s edge.

2.   Watch for further erosion of river banks and roads.

3.   Obey all traffic controls and barricades

4.   Stay out of closed areas

Listen for further updates and follow the instructions that apply to your area.

For the latest information on this evolving situation please visit the County Facebook page or the CPREM Facebook page.



Road Use within Birch Hills County

Effective July 03, 2020 at 10:00am, the following road ban will be in place by Birch Hills County.

All gravel roads will be at 75% axle weight 24 hours per day.  All other roads are as posted.

If you have any questions regarding road bans in Birch Hills County please call the County Office at (780) 694-3793.



The Smoky River road is closed

The Tardif Pit road is closed


Paying Bills Online

Pay your bills with telephone or online banking through:



Residential and Bulk Water


Bulk Water - Residential and Agricultural


Per Cubic Meter


  Bulk Water - Commercial and Industrial


Per Cubic Meter


Hamlet - Residential and Commercial


Per Cubic Meter

Masks for Albertans Initiative

Starting June 8, 2020, you can get 4 free non-medical masks per person at the Birch Hills County Office. These are available while supplies last with no purchase necessary.

If you are interested in participating, phone the County Office at (780-694-3793) or email ( to arrange pick up.

For more information on this Government of Alberta Program, visit:



Media Release – For Immediate Release Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Birch Hills County Closes Access to Municipal Building

As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, Birch Hills County will be closing access to County Administrative Building located in Wanham effective Wednesday, March 18, 2020 until further notice.

Access to County staff will still be available by telephone or email. Those requiring to make a payment may do so by cheques to be either mailed in or dropped off in the drop box provided at the County office, through online options, or with Credit Card by phone.

Council and staff apologize for any inconvenience that this closure may cause. Please watch for updated information that will be made public as it becomes available on the County website or on the County's Facebook page.


Birch Hills County Closes Access to Eaglesham Hall

As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, Birch Hills County will be closing access to Eaglesham Hall until further notice. We apologize for any inconvenience that this closure may cause. Please watch for updated information that will be made public as it becomes available on the County website or on the County's Facebook page.



All large fuel load fires are suspended in the Birch Hills County as of May 21, 2020.

Re-check all burn sites for smoke, flame or heat. All fires are to be extinguished; landowners are responsible for ensuring any holdover fires are out at this time.

These measures aim to reduce the number of human caused wildfires, as most if not all wildfires in the early spring are caused by human activity.

Reducing human caused wildfires helps keep our firefighting resources focused where they are most needed, especially when our firefighting resources may be challenged due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This restriction will be subject to daily weather conditions and may change.


  • Backyard fire pits
  • Regulated campfires.
  • Portable propane fire pits that are CSA approved or UL certified.
  • Gas or propane stoves and barbecues that are CSA approved or UL certified and are designed for cooking or heating.
  • Catalytic or infrared-style heaters.
  • Burn barrels with a wire mesh lid.

To view a map of the Fire Ban

Overland Flooding Damages

Please notify the County if your property has sustained uninsurable damage as a result of the April 2020 overland flooding.

If a DRP (Disaster Recovery Program) is announced, Birch Hills County will be required to submit its application directly to the Province of Alberta, within 90 days from the date of the flooding.

As part of the application process the County will be asked to provide an estimate of damage to the County’s infrastructure and an estimate of the number of private properties that experienced damage as a result of the flooding in late April 2020.

Please complete the online form by clicking here and send it in to the County if your property has sustained uninsurable damage as a result of this springs’ overland flooding by email or fax 780-694-3788. Please call: (780) 694-3793 if you have further questions.

Visit the Government of Alberta website at for more information on the Disaster Recovery Programs.

Birch Hills County does not make decisions on the eligibility, approval or rejection of any private owner application.

Community Newsletter

Read the newsletters for Eaglesham and Wanham.

Check out the Town of Spirit River's Community Connect.

Smoky River FCSS newsletter for July, August, September 2020

March 27, 2020

TWP 782 Closed

From RR 264 to RR 10 (Hole in Bridge)

May 11, 2020

The Shaftesbury Ferry is open for the season.

Shaftesbury Ferry is back up and running for the season regular running hours 7 am – 11:30 pm, 7 days a week.
They ask that all people remain in the vehicle while crossing due to Covid 19 and no walk ons to keep all travelers and their staff safe at this time.

December 01, 2018

The Burnt River Crossing is closed.

COVID-19 Info for Albertans:

We recommend that you use the Government of Alberta website (see link below) for the most up-to-date information about COVID-19. Locally, Central Peace Regional Emergency Management has launched a website and a Facebook page containing the latest information on COVID-19.

Central Peace Regional Emergency Management:

Other trusted Sources of Information include:

If you know someone without a computer, have them dial 811.

Business Resilience Service

This service will help entrepreneurs and small business owners in need of financial planning advice, particularly those who may not have access to an accountant. The service will also be open to not-for-profit organizations and charities. The hotline is a national, bilingual service operated by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (EST). The toll-free number is 1-866-989-1080.