Lloyd ignored for grants

By Geoff Lee

January 17, 2017 12:00 AM

Lloydminster will reapply for federal infrastructure funds to build an $80 million wastewater treatment plant for the city after being shut out from the latest round of funded project grants.
Not one cent of the $38.6 million for 28 for water, wastewater and public transit projects across Saskatchewan announced on Jan. 11 went to Lloydminster.
The funding will support infrastructure projects such as new and upgraded wastewater lagoons in nine municipalities across Saskatchewan and new buses for the cities of Moose Jaw and Prince Albert.
Lloydminster has until Jan. 28 to reapply for grants to the New Builds Canada Provincial Territorial Infrastructure component through Saskatchewan and Alberta.
“We’ll be going back to the table looking for some support from our government,” said Mayor Gerald Aalbers on Jan. 12.
“We are asking the federal government to contribute a third, we are asking the provincial governments to contribute a third and we contribute a third ... I made it really clear to the federal government that our main priority is the wastewater treatment plant.”
At press time Council was set to forward a motion to submit two new applications to Alberta and Saskatchewan.
“It’s a process of doing two applications—it will double the paperwork but it’s all part of the process,” said Aalbers.
“You apply to the provincial government and it rolls up to the federal government.”
The motion would state that Council agrees to meet legislated standards, to meet the terms and conditions for the relevant Clean Water Wastewater Fund Program component.
The motion also states Council will conduct an open tendering process, to manage the construction cost, to fund ongoing operation and maintenance costs, and to follow any mitigation measures as required by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and the Environmental Assessment Act (Saskatchewan).
Aalbers said the estimated $80 million price tag for a new wastewater treatment plant is the figure the grant applications are based on, but he notes the exact cost is not concrete.
“Either way it’s not going to go anywhere until we secure some funding,” he said.
“I think the provincial governments understands that, the federal government understands that.”
He said council will wait until the new application is in place before requesting an extension to the city’s delay of instituting the regulations from Saskatchewan Environment on the discharge of our waste water.
“Maybe it’s going to be a little longer than they’d like but—ask for an extension and hopefully they’ll grant that and we can go from there,” said Aalbers.
Aalbers said he doesn’t expect the federal government to be coming out with any new funding programs soon.
“What we’re applying for is what we have to work with today— we’ll be looking at options to secure funds to help for this one way or another through various avenues we have at the city,” he said.
The village of Mervin south of Lloydminster was one of the lucky communities to receive $650,000 from the federal government and $325,000 from Saskatchewan for a lagoon.
About the list of 28 funded projects, Aalbers said it’s great to see that there will be some work done in Saskatchewan to improve water quality and wastewater.
“We’ll hopefully be on the list in the new year—that’s what we’ll be working towards in 2017,” he said.
“I suspect council will be supporting a motion to move it forward.”

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