The County of Stettler Council has directed administration to develop a funding policy for special projects.
Councillor Paul McKay made the motion directing administration to develop the policy during the Feb. 9 council meeting after council received a funding request from the Buffalo Sands Community Association.
The Buffalo Sands Community Association made the request to council after having new signage recently installed at the entrance of the community at a cost of $5,984.38.
With the work complete, Buffalo Sands requested financial assistance from the county for the project.
The project had been previously submitted, and approved, to the Municipal Planing Commission, however had not been seen, or approved, by council.
“This, deciding after the fact, is backwards in my mind,” said Coun. Justin Stevens.
Coun. James Nibourg agreed with his colleague.
“Policy makes good governance,” said Nibourg.
“We don’t have a policy on this. I don’t think this is a route we want to go down.”
Director of Municipal Services Andrew Brysiuk suggested that funding for the project could come from the county’s rural development fund.
Ultimately, a motion was put forward to cover 50 per cent of the expense of the sign, which was defeated, before McKay put forward his motion for administration to develop a policy.
County of Stettler council has received two requests for waterline connections.
In the first, a country resident adjacent to a central waterline has requested a connection, with their home being 500 onto the property.
Under the current county policy, water connections are only taken to the property line, with the resident being responsible for the connection from that point onward.
The initial connection fee is $15,000 for a county resident to connect to the line, and preliminary estimates released by the county show that the cost to property line would cost the county under $10,000.
If the county were to approve the extension onto the property, the extra cost would be around $6,200.
“I’m leaning, if our policy states property line, that’s what we go with,” said Stevens.
“It’s not like we’re flush with cash to do the extras.”
Coun. Nibourg motioned to take the waterline to the property line, and leave the on-property connection to the home to the resident.
The second waterline request came from a resident a significant distant away from any of the main lines.
According to Brysiuk, running the line 3200 metres down an unused road allowance would be the shortest distance to the resident’s property.
The cost for the route would be an estimated $185,000.
A second route, which would potentially allow for the connection of up to five additional properties, would run for 4000 meters along Highway 601 and cost an estimated $220,000.
Both routes would be significantly over the $15,000 connection fee charged by the county.
Coun. Nibourg motioned to add the resident to the list of other properties which would also like to be connected to the county’s water system and defer the request to future planning sessions.