| Jan 06, 2005

Feature Article January 6, 2005

Feature article January 6, 2005

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Sydenham Water: Where is requested report on villagers financing options? by Wilma Kenny

South Frontenac Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Gord Burns confirmed that its time to revive the Sydenham Water Steering Committee, now that the Federal and Provincial governments have officially agreed to commit a maximum of $4,789,986 to the project.

It has been a year since tenders were last called: Burns said he hopes an updated tender call could be issued by the end of the month. Following this time line, he said Council should be in a position to award tenders by March, with the intent of starting the project in early spring. Because the old tenders are no longer valid, the final cost of the project is not known..


Concerning individual household costs, CAO Burns said that once the new tenders are in, the Township would be able to recalculate the household schedule. He added that such a schedule would not include individual hook-up or well closing costs. It will be up to Council to decide whether to hold an information open house at some point in this process.

When asked for comment, Richard Munroe of the Sydenham Safe Water Association made reference to a resolution passed by Council on October 5/04 requesting the Clerk and Treasurer prepare a report for Council exploring financing options for the village share of the Water Project costs. It was to: "list and evaluate the options to allocate portions of the local costs to other payers than just the village residents,...eg costs of future growth capacity may be allocated to future residents and financed by the Township until the growth occurs." It was also to list possible alternative sources for long term financing of the local share, such as financing from township reserves, or accessing new provincial capital funds, or attaching the costs to the property rather than the current homeowner. The resolution passed, with Councillors Barr, Robinson and Mayor Lake opposed. To date, this report has not been tabled at a Council meeting.

Munroe said there are a number of other unanswered questions. He pointed out the need to review the $600,000 project savings that have been identified by Guy Laporte of TSH Engineering. Munroe questioned whether, in the long run, there was any money to be saved in drastically cutting or removing contingency costs, using lighter weight materials, or cutting back on the numbers of fire hydrants. He also wondered how the Township proposed to pay for expansion costs, as no portion of these will be covered by Federal/Provincial funding.

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