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First reading of Picture Butte pool basin borrowing bylaw

Posted on April 23, 2019 by Sunny South News
Graphic submitted by the Town of Picture Butte

By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News

The Town of Picture Butte has taken steps to secure a debenture to finance pool construction if needed.

During their regular April 8 meeting, Picture Butte town council reviewed a proposed borrowing bylaw for the new pool.

Bylaw 881-19 would allow the town to create the legislative framework needed in order to obtain funding to construct the pool basin for the Cor Van Raay and Community Aquatic Centre.

The funding would be obtained through the issuance of a debenture in the amount of $1,000,000, and the town can only use those funds to construct the pool basin.

“If we borrow, we have to have (this bylaw) in place before we actually start summer construction,” said Michelle Overbeeke, director of corporate service for the town, adding that council can rescind the bylaw if they don’t end up needing to use it.

“It takes approximately 45 days from start-to-finish, so we miss the June borrowing anyways, but we have to start the process.”

The bylaw would stay in effect until council rescinds it. However, the bylaw only allows the town to borrow money to fund the construction of the pool basin.

According to the bylaw, the town will repay the indebtedness in a repayment structure in effect, such as by semi-annual or annual equal payments of combined principal and interest installments, within the next 25 years at a rate not exceeding the interest rate set by an authorized financial institution on the borrowing date, that does not exceed a rate of eight per cent.

Mayor Cathy Moore asked if the bylaw was only for if they borrowed from the government.

Overbeeke and town CAO Keith Davis said the bylaw would allow them to borrow from anywhere.

The cost of constructing the entire pool facility, including the building, is estimated at $3,783,791.

From that, the town plans on getting about $1,215,212 from provincial grants and $1,568,579 from capital reserves.

Late last year, the town received a $1 million donation towards the pool from prominent community member Cor Van Raay, and the town had hosted a fundraiser on April 5 to raise money to pay for the $310,000 pool slide.

Final numbers of the amount raised at the fundraiser were not available as of press time.

Van Raay’s donation is included under capital reserves, but as the town had not finished tallying the amount raised at the fundraiser at the time of the council meeting, it was not included in the bylaw.

According to section 258 of the Municipal Government Act, a municipality may borrow to finance a capital project, with the borrowing term exceeding five years if ” (a) a borrowing bylaw that authorizes the borrowing has been passed, (b) the money to be borrowed is insufficient because the cost of the capital property has increased, and (c) the increased cost does not exceed 15 per cent of the original cost of the capital property”.

Council unanimously passed first reading of the bylaw.

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