Monday, November 13, 2017

Letter: The Beaver Mines wastewater Gong Show Chapter 17

Cornell Van Ryk - I’m starting to think that the turds launched in Beaver Mines are like salmon, encoded to head for a specific stream… Mill Creek. We’ve tried to throw obstacles in their path, offered better and cheaper alternatives, we’ve even elected a Council opposed, but the turds seem determined to come here.

When the M.D. election results were announced, we thought the Mill Creek Lagoon project was as good as dead. The new Council now has 3 of 5 members that do not support this wastewater alternative and want to pursue others. 2 have spoken openly of their opposition and a 3rd seems to lean that way as well. We celebrated prematurely.

It now turns out that one of the Councillors may have a conflict of interest in this project and has chosen to recuse himself from all votes and discussion related. Council is now evenly split, 2 in favour of the Mill Creek lagoon option and 2 against. A motion at the Council meeting on Nov. 7, which would have resulted in a detailed review, was defeated 2 votes to 2.

This is an interesting (to say the least) stalemate. Administration is plodding ahead, spending money authorized by the previous Council. That Council authorized spending in the order of $390k to design/engineer the Mill Creek Lagoon. There are not enough votes on the current Council to kill this spending.

One day, however, once all the preliminary work is completed, Council will need to pass a motion to spend a further $4.2 million to actually build the thing. 2 votes for and 2 against would not carry this motion.

It appears we are engineering something that does not have the majority support required to actually build it. How much time and money will be spent before Council comes to grips with this reality?

The good news is that M.D. Administration is so inept (stay tuned for Chapter 18) at moving this project forward, that Council has time to sort out this vote split issue and it might not cost the taxpayer a lot in the interim. The cash register is, however, ringing.

This issue will be brought to Council’s attention for comment via a letter to be presented at their Nov. 28 meeting. The way in which this gets handled will probably by indicative of how this Council will perform over the next 4 years.

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