SALTAIR WATER ADVISORY COMMITTEE UPDATE
Submitted by: Lynne Smith, Chair
9 Aug 2018
Current Grant Application
On August 1st, I attended the Electoral Area Services Committee (EASC) meeting. I also met with the CVRD Water Manager, Brian Dennison, to review, the current grant application for filtration, Saltair’s water options, our Saltair Water Distribution Upgrades for 2018 and plans for the CVRD staff to hold a meeting with the Saltair community. The video link for this meeting can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qktsholxnRI
On August 8th, I attended the CVRD Board meeting and the CVRD Board Directors passed the motion for the Saltair Water Treatment Expansion Project – Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program – Green Infrastructure – Environmental Quality Sub-steam application for grant funding.
During the Public Input portion of the EASC meeting (at 14:47 – 15:37), I spoke briefly in support of the grant application. In the video, CVRD Water Manager Brian Dennison talks about the grant (at 2:12 – 2:17). The EASC Directors voted to approve the motion (at 2:30:14 – 2:32). The EASC approval moved to the August 8th CVRD Board for its approval. (That approval was granted at the 8 Aug CVRD Board meeting.)
The motion was, “That an application for grant funding through the Investing In Canada Infrastructure Program – Green Infrastructure – Environmental Quality Sub-stream for the Saltair Water Treatment Expansion Project (Electoral Area G) in the amount $6,030,000 be submitted and that subject to grant approval up to a maximum of $1,608,201 (26.67%) in short term borrowing for the Saltair Water Treatment Expansion Project be approved and that the loan be paid back over five years under the Liabilities Under Agreements Section 175 of the Community Charter.” The $6,030,000 includes a power generating station as part of the project.
As above, the grant application requires $1,608,201 of local funding. In the video, Brian Dennison describes the five- year, short-term loan option. The CVRD is suggesting the Saltair Water System can meet its local funding requirement using such a loan. Once the application has been submitted, CVRD staff will be meeting with the Saltair community to review the option of a short-term loan or taxation increase. CVRD staff will present information about the groundwater option, joining the Town of Ladysmith filtration system and other financial options for a stand-alone, Saltair filtration system (i.e., 10-year, 15-year or 20-year loans). However, coming to the community for a long-term loan at this time would take approximately six months and we would miss out on applying for the grant.
Saltair’s Water Options
In the video, Brian Dennison describes three options for Saltair water:
1) Join the Town of Ladysmith filtration system, which would involve costs to Saltair taxpayers/users approx equal to the cost of a stand-alone, Saltair filtration system.
2) Groundwater, which the CVRD is currently exploring.
3) A stand-alone filtration system.
Brian said CVRD staff will be coming to the Saltair community in the fall (Oct) to review these three options once they have data from the groundwater exploration.
Saltair’s Water Distribution Upgrades
When I met with Brian, he said many of theCVRD projects are coming in at a higher than expected cost. Because of this, the CVRD has revised its 2018 expectations. The bids will be posted shortly. The revised expectation is that the work on Chemainus Road between the PRV Station and Olsen Road will be completed and the work on Chemainus Road between Olsen Road and Southin Road and the work on Southin Road will be optional.
$258,364 of our Area G Gas Tax funds have been allocated to upgrading work on Old Victoria Road. The work will start at the North Cowichan Boundary to deal with a two-inch, 60 metre stretch. Then work will progress towards Jackman Rd. CVRD staff advise that Old Victoria work will have to be done in phases due to higher costs.
Fire Fighting Concerns
When the Chemainus Fire Department and/or the Ladysmith Fire Department attend fires in Saltair, they bring and use pumper trucks. It does not matter where you live in Saltair. The Fire Departments use pumper trucks to fight the fires. Concerns about water pressure for fighting fires is not an issue with the use of pumper trucks. The same is true for Crofton.
Saltair Water Advisory Committee saltairwater [at] gmail [dot] com