Sunday, July 23, 2017

Letter to the editor: Beaver Mines water/wastewater project concerns revisited

Cornell Van Ryk - There was a time when the water and wastewater project was of interest only to the residents of Beaver Mines and those individuals that will be impacted by the lagoon proposed for the confluence of Mill Creek and the Castle River. That time is over. ALL M.D. ratepayers are about to be impacted and should pay attention.

It seems that Council is about to approve the construction of the water pipeline from the Cowley water treatment plant to Beaver Mines and from there to the Castle Mtn. Resort. Alberta Environment has confirmed that water cannot be supplied to the residences of Beaver Mines until such a time as a wastewater treatment facility is in operation as well.

Herein lies the problem, there is no approved wastewater treatment facility and Council has not received the grant money to finance one, yet they are moving forward on a water pipeline that may take years to be utilized. Grant money will not be available until spring of 2018 earliest and there is no guarantee that approval will be given then. The Mill Creek lagoon site will be subject to numerous studies which at best will delay approval of the location and possibly result in rejection of this proposal. OUR money is about to be tied up for a long time in a water line that cannot be connected to the homes in Beaver Mines.

This project has a long history of mismanagement. There is no clear mandate from the residents of Beaver Mines in support of this project. Some have invested large sums in a proper septic and well water treatment systems and have no desire to change. Many have not been given the proper cost numbers they require to form an opinion. The projected total cost is astounding, somewhere around $15mm to supply water and sewer to some 50 homes.

I would encourage all M.D. ratepayers to get informed. Read the information posted on the M.D. website and the minutes of the meetings. Talk to your Councillor. Attend all meetings. It’s our money, and we all need to ensure it is being spent prudently.

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