NEWS

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sports complex conceptual drawingA conceptual drawing of an outdoor sports complex.

Hub Staff

The purchase of land for a multi-sport complex, the refurbishment of the Port Elgin water tower, the new Saugeen Shores Police detachment and sewer and street upgrades for both Southampton and Port Elgin are proposed in the 2018 Saugeen Shores Capital Draft Budget following discussions in council chambers on December 5.

Final decisions on cuts and spending will be made in January, where the capital budget and November’s Operating Budget which hovers around a $44 tax hike will be assessed.

The Capital Budget saw the largest amount of funds set aside for the build of the new police headquarters at $6.8 million. Roads, Roadside and Sidewalks saw a division total of $2,699,000 with work purposed for Elgin Street, Harbour Street to Brook Lane at $390,000; Elgin Street, Brook Lane to Spring Street at $357,000; Harbour Street, Izzard to Pump Station at $380,000; and Orchard Drive, Wellington to Bricker at $350,000; with large projects in Southampton resulting from the water tower supply line replacement, Grosvenor Street, Island to Peel at $180,000; Grosvenor Street, Peel to Adelaide at $245,000; Grosvenor, Adelaide to Chantry View Drive, $430,000; and Streetscape bump outs for High Street, Victoria to Albert at $150,000.

The growing number of baseball players from all age groups and the need for additional diamonds in Saugeen Shores was discussed at length with councillors taking a swing at the fences proposing to set aside $1,000,000 for the purchase of land for a multi-sport complex, and $40,000 ($20,000 taken from Development Charges) for conceptual drawings.

To assist all baseball leagues, councillors also approved $45,000 ($40,000 taken from Development Charges) to fix up and maintain the Jubilee Park back diamond in Southampton that could be used for multiple user groups during the 2018 ball season.

The sports complex brought the Parks Budget division total to $1,281,000 with other budget items including the replacement of the Town Pond staircase, and a new trail around the harbour parking lot connecting the Harbour Trail with North Shore Park for $65,000. $40,000 was set aside for roof replacement at the Longdock washrooms (Gerry’s Fries) in Southampton.

The Port Elgin Standpipe (water tower) will see a much needed refurbishment following a assessment that stated only one to two years of life remained. A new tower is proposed to be built following a tender process and Ministry approval. The cost set aside for the project is $1,450,000 with ($100,000 from Development Charges and $1,350,000 from the Water Reserve).

Both Water Treatment Plants also have funding set aside for 2018 at $128,000 for Southampton and $210,000 Port Elgin to ensure efficient operation through various projects. Funding is from Wastewater Reserve.

Market Street from Goderich to Waterloo has a proposed plan for sewer upgrades with $125,000 set aside.

The Grand Old Lady, Southampton Coliseum which recently celebrated its 40th anniversary, has $1,000,000 set aside for major upgrades which will tend to leaks, moisture levels and eliminate potential for mold growth by removing existing flooring and piping. Upgrades will also include replacing the dasher board system and installing a dehumidification system. Funding to the tune of $500,000 will be carried over from the 2017 budget and another $500,000 will be taken from future capital reserves.

Many Saugeen Shores facilities have the potential to see upgrades in 2018, including $230,000 for exterior restoration for the Southampton Town Hall, $30,000 for the Chantry Centre outdoor staircase, and $65,000 for the Southampton Medical Building roof repair.

Getting cut from the 2018 budget was the removal of the Moore Bridge which would have cost have $110,000 and battery backup for streetlights in Port Elgin for $34,000 for a total savings of $143,000. The intersection at Tomlinson is run by a water-powered generator.

Deputy Mayor Luke Charbonneau thought it would be fiscally prudent to put the money saved from the cut projects into projects like Port Elgin waterfront improvements by putting it into the Waterfront Capital so as not to deplete the borrowing capacity.

“I think debenturing at this stage, given the obligation that the municipality has in the future for the $377,000 is not the fiscally prudent thing that we could do,” said the Deputy Mayor adding that he’d like to see them take their tax levy contribution to capital under 2 percent. “Whatever cash we gather from that should be set off against debentures on the waterfront,” he said.

Charbonneau then asked the administration to return with a plan to have a zero debenture rate by potentially using other reserves and sources for waterfront projects in 2018. “We’re choosing not to put the municipality into deeper debt,” said Charbonneau. “We’re going to do some really exciting waterfront improvement at the base of Green Street and we’re not going to borrow money to do that, we’re going to pay for it this year.” Charbonneau added that it’s important to pay for things within the year they occur.

town pond staircaseReplacing the Town Pond steps was included in the proposed Parks budget.

jubileeRehabilitation of the south ball diamond at Jubilee Park for minor ball, ladies slo pitch and practices.

See also:

A three-year plan for waterfront improvements presented to Council

Third to bat hits home with councillors

 

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