Canal Flats setting course for sewer system fix
The Village of Canal Flats has applied for infrastructure grant funding to help cover about 75% of the cost of a needed $913,000 sewer system fix.
Noting “council always seeks to provide reliable and sustainable service to village residents and minimize the effect on taxes,” the village explained in a media release that it has applied for two key grant applications to replace aging and dilapidated key sewer system infrastructure in the community. This includes sewer lift stations (sewer line pumps) and the Sewage Treatment Plant the village operates on the south side of the highway.
“It is hoped that these applications are successful and that the cost to taxpayers to replace these items is very low. However, some of this infrastructure, especially a sewer lift station near the ‘Subdivision’ in Canal Flats, was built in the 1960s and is near the end of its service life,” stated a village message shared on its FaceBook page and in its community newsletter.
In order to assure no eventual sewer service interruption, the village needs to be in position to self-fund through borrowing for replacement of the lift station if that grant is unsuccessful.
This piece of critical infrastructure is estimated to cost up to $700,000 on its own to reconstruct.
Similarly, the village’s sewage treatment plant, which dates to the early 1980s, is in poor condition. The liner has visible rips and the electrical system is old and in need of replacement, the village outlined, adding it has applied for another grant to cover 73.33% of the total replacement cost estimated by engineering ($913,000).
“If granted this will leave the village responsible for the remaining 26.77% of the total cost. The cost to the village for just over one-quarter of this project is estimated at just under $250,000.
This is a great value for the village if a $913,000 job can be done for a little less than $250,000,” the village message said.
“For the lift stations it is hoped that the grant will come in and there will not ultimately be a need to borrow any money for replacement of these (but be ready in the event the grant money doesn’t come). If the borrowing is needed, the cost of borrowing the up to $700,000 over 30 years at current interest rates would be no more than $0.54 per frontage foot for property owners in the sewer user area, explained Adrian Bergles, village chief administrative officer.
“For the sewer treatment plant, it is hoped that this money will be needed as it will mean replacement of critical and expensive infrastructure at about 27 cents on the dollar. If the borrowing is needed, the cost of borrowing the up to $250,000 at the same terms as above would be $0.18 per frontage foot in the sewer user area.
“Village council has initiated an alternative approval process per the Community Charter to authorize the potential borrowing. Residents will have the chance to approve this approach.”
Bergles concluded by noting more information will be made available soon.