| Mar 16, 2006


Feature Article - February 23, 2006

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Feature Article - March 16, 2006

NFcommits to Clar-Mill Fire hall

by JeffGreen

It’s been talked about for more than 10 years, and has been an ongoing issue for the current North Frontenac Council from the day they were sworn in more than two years ago. Now it is finally going to be built.

In a 6-1 vote, North Frontenac Council decided last Thursday to accept a bid by Millenium Construction to build a four-bay fire hall with a 2nd floor mezzanine at the township office site at a cost of $273,495.

The new fire hall will be the home of the Clarendon and Miller fire crew.

Millenium’s was the lowest of three bids on the project. After a technical committee made up of senior township staff members looked at the three bids, staff recommended accepting the Millenium bid.

Another $35,000 is being budgeted for other costs related to the project, such as excavation work, signage, and a septic system, most of which will be completed by township staff.

Amalgamation

Only about 1/3 of the project cost, however, an estimated $100,000, will be taken out of this year’s township budget. Last year Council put aside $125,000 for the project, and although some of that money was spent on site development, about $109,000 remains. As well, the Clar-Mill Fire Ladies have raised approximately $100,000 over many years, which they have earmarked for a new fire hall. While a commitment from the Fire Ladies has been made, Mayor Maguire said the exact amount of the donation will have to be clarified at a meeting in early April.

In considering the staff recommendation to move ahead with the fire hall, only Councillor Clayton expressed any serious reservations.

“It’s much too much,” he said. “Even without taking a probable 20% over run into account, it’s way too much to spend. Bringing anything in at over $250,000 wouldn’t get my vote. How can we face the folks at Snow Road, when we were upset that they spent $10,000 too much on a fire hall they built themselves, and then we spend a quarter of a million dollars like this?”

No one else on Council supported Clayton’s view, however.

Mayor Maguire pointed out that the fire hall will be an asset for the township as a whole.

“The second floor of the hall is designated as a training facility that all firefighters in North Frontenac will be able to use. I think this project is long overdue as well,” he said.

“I just think we should build a fire hall within our means, perhaps a two-bay hall,” Councillor Clayton countered.

In the end, Council approved a motion authorising staff to enter into a contract with Millenium Construction, with only Bud Clayton voting against the motion.

Cheryl Robson, the township’s Chief Administrative Officer/Treasurer, estimates that $100,000 will have to be raised for the project in the 2006 township budget, which Council will be working on later this spring.

Building of the new fire hall will begin as soon as possible, with a projected completion date of June 1.

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