Coaldale town council review draft capital budgetPosted on November 25, 2020 by Sunny South News
By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News
A draft budget has provided Coaldale town council with some insights on their upcoming capital budget for 2021-26.
During a special Nov. 5 council meeting, Kyle Beauchamp, director of corporate service for the town, presented Coaldale town council with a draft budget for 2021.
The budget presentation, which is not the finalized proposed budget for 2021, aimed to provide council with with operational and capital budgeting projections, information on project updates, new requests and financial projections. The presentation was also meant to garner feedback from council so adjustments may be made before the operating and capital budgets come back to council for approval in December. Under the Municipal Government Act, municipalities must pass a three-year operating plan and a fiveyear capital plan that are revisited and updated each year. Coun. Briane Simpson announced at the start of the meeting that she would recused herself for any conversations pertaining to the town’s Civic Square and fire hall projects.
Capital projects discussed at the meeting include: Multi-Use Recreation Facility: At council’s Oct. 26 meeting, the estimated budget for this project had increased from $10 to $13 million. $10 million would be funded through the annual recreation tax levy, and $3 million through excess MSI Capital and Federal Gas funds, for total available funding of $13 million.
- Civic Square: In the 2019/2021 Capital Budget, the total estimated cost was $8,630,000, under the assumption that the town was the developer of the project. Since then, the town is no longer the developer of the project, and the budget was reduced as the expense for commercial space within the Civic Square complex will be borne by a third party developer. The budget for the town’s portion of the project is $5,830,000. Since the draft budget meeting, a developer was chosen for the project, with details appearing in the Nov. 17 edition of the Sunny South News and online.
- Northeast Industrial Park: Work is required to repair all road deficiencies and place top lift asphalt along 13th, 14th Avenue and 11th Street, with 12th avenue being excluded as lots still need to be serviced. Utility services are to be completed when lots are sold, and then place top lift of asphalt in remaining areas. For 2020, the project was re-estimated at a total cost of $470,000, including a 15 per cent contingency. Lower lot sales and additional construction costs meant the project was delayed, and is now scheduled to be completed in 2021.
- Infrastructure Upgrades for the Future Development of Northwest Coaldale: Servicing is required for the extension of 16 Avenue west along to 27 street (road, sewer and water utilities), construction of 27th Street south to 18th Avenue (road and water) and traffic control signal lights will be installed on Highway 3 and 30th Street. Total project cost is estimates at $3,250,000, with an estimated $750,000 for traffic control and signal light improvements and $2,500,000 for road and utility infrastructure. Funding for the project would come from the province’s Municipal Stimulus Program ($1,033,091), offsite levies from land sales ($625,000), sale of land assets ($1,500,000) and 2020 operational surplus ($91,909)
- Lagoon upgrades: The province provides an approval for the operation of the lagoons under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA), and under the town’s current approval, the lagoons must be upgraded to meet current standards. The detail design of the upgrades will be completed and ready to tender the project in March 2021, ahead of the approval schedule of October 2021. From the 2019 capital budget deliberations, the estimated cost of the project was $8,780,000, which includes 10 per cent contingency and 12 per cent for engineering fees. In early 2020, MPE updated the pre-design report and cost estimate as $10,454,000. Additionally, there is also an additional $1,360,000 in additional upgrades that council could add to the project, which include upgrades to the effluent and main lift station pump station. The town received an Alberta Water and Wastewater Partnership (AMWWP) grant that covers 37.17 per cent of applicable costs, and other funding sources include excess municipal grants and cash surplus (estimated $2.1 million), municipal cash (estimated $3.5 million) and debenture debt. The design is expected to be completed and tendered in March 2021. Administration recommends that council proceeds with the detail design and tender, while making the upgrades and optional items in the tender. When a firm price is available in Spring 2021, the options will be presented for review, and council can then decide which upgrades they would like to proceed with, along with potential adjustments to utility rates to fund such debenture debt.
- Potable Water Reservoir Pipe Replacement: During a 2013 inspection, Operations Utility staff noticed that the header pipe, which brings the water into the reservoir, was starting to degrade and was getting pin-sized holes in it, which allowed water to short circuit the system. During the 2018 inspection, measurements were taken of the pipe to be able to complete a re-design. It is recommended that the town complete the design in 2021 to produce a reasonable cost estimate, with construction to take place in 2023. The estimated cost for the project is $500,000, with $15,000 for the design, and it can be funded though the water utility reserve, which has an estimated balance of $950,000 as of Jan. 1, 2021.
- Southern Regional Stormwater Project: Previous approval of the project has the town contributing 10 per cent to the project, for a total of $456,606.50 between 2020-2024.
- Malloy Phase 2B: Earlier in November, the town announced they had received provincial and federal funding for Phase 2B. The total expected cost for the project $3,100,000, with funding coming from grants at the provincial and federal level ($2,260,000), regional partnerships ($560,000) and the town ($280,000).
- SCBA Compressor Fill Station: The current self-contained breathing apparatus fill station was purchased in 1995, and has a life expectancy of 20 years. Additionally, a new unit is needed to accommodate newly purchased SCBA bottle and for it to meet NFPA guidelines. A new station would cost $48,000, and will be funded from the sals of existing equipment ($8,500), fire equipment reserve ($19,750) and local partnerships ($19,750).
- Community Centre Furnaces: Two new furnaces are needed to replace two 30-year-old engineered air units at the Coaldale Community centre. Requested funds of $35,000 for the replacement, including contingency, to be funded from the Community Centre Reserve.
- Parks Equipment: Council had approved $60,00 for a new parks tractor as part of 2020 budget deliberations, and it is requested to increase the budget to $80,000 allow for the purchase of new equipment – with a v-blade, sand and salt spreader, sprayer, and frontend loader – for increased park maintenance and snow removal requirements. Funding would come from the Parks & Playground Reserve.
- Museum Foundation Repair: In July, the town experienced heavy rainfall which leaked through the foundation walls of the Gem of the West Museum in several locations, damaging one set of interior walls in the Society’s display area. To prevent further water damage, repairs are recommend, which will consist of digging around the foundation of the Museum and waterproofing the foundation walls, which have several large cracks throughout them. The estimated cost to excavate and install the barrier around the foundation is $118,000, due to the limited space available to complete the work, and the need to not overexpose too much of the foundation at this time, and an estimated $22,000 for landscaping and contingency,for a total estimated cost of $140,000. There is an estimated $105,000 balance in the Museum Capital Reserve at Jan. 1, 2021, leaving a funding deficit of $35,000, which could be funded through sources such as an internal loan, Community Services Reserve, Safety Project Reserve and General Operating Reserve.
- Zamboni update: Council had previously approved the purchase of a new electric Zamboni for 2021, with a budget of $75,000 from the municipal sources and $50,000 from a unconfirmed grant. However, this was was under-estimated by approximately $25,000, and did not include the cost of a battery replacement pack, at $10,000. While there is a high likelihood the town will receive potential grant funding for this equipment, the grant is capped at 30 per cent, which would total $44,919. After consultation, the Friends of the Arena are putting forward $35,000 for the project. These funding sources, combined with $80,081 from Arena Reserves, will make up the new funding model for the Zamboni.
- Arena Slab Repair Update: Approved during 2020 budget deliberations, it had done out for tender in early November, and the replacement of the arena floor slab is scheduled to begin in 2021, during the arena’s offseason, for an estimated $1,020,000, funded through MSI Capital and Federal Gas Tax Grants.
- Library Alcove Area: A total of $10,000 is requested to enclose an alcove in the Coaldale Public Library with plexiglass and a door. Funding would come from the Library Capital Reserve.
- Water Meter Addition on Malloy South: The SMRID has requested that the town installs a water meter on the Malloy intake, in order to track water usage, which is a standard practice for all SMRID users. It will cost an estimated $20,000, and be funded from the Storm Reserve.
- Street Light Update: Phase 1, 2 and 3 saw the town add 115 street lights for $222,000. Savings for the project had come from changing to an above ground power source as opposed to the original idea of a below ground source. The initial project was 27 new lights at a cost of $298,000 for phase 1, and the remaining budget will be used to complete phase 4 in the industrial area.