ST. PAUL – During the most recent County of St. Paul Public Works meeting on May 23, council discussed the removal of the Garner Lake boat launch.
The boat launch’s current condition is in a state of disrepair due to the degradation, heaving in the frost, and crumbling of the materials used in its construction, namely articulating concrete and cinder blocks, according to information provided to council.
Given that the water level of the lake has also dropped beyond the reach of the launch, there is no need for extensive measures such as site isolation, fish salvage, or on-site monitoring during the removal process.
Instead, the voids left after removing the launch pads would be filled with sand, enabling smaller boats to be unloaded at the user's own risk, heard council.
To carry out the removal, an estimated budget of $9,500 is required, said CAO Sheila Kitz, and “you need to have approval” from Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP).
Upon submission of a Code of Practice for the project, the AEP will review and determine if Water Act Approval is necessary, as the pad removal falls “within the bed and shore of the lake,” according to administration.
If approval is required, an additional cost of $5,000 would be needed, “so about $14,000 at the worst,” said Kitz.
“That’s absolutely ridiculous,” said Reeve Glen Ockerman, stating that the County is “trying to make it better,” but the AEP wants “to cost us $14,000.”
“It’s not the actual work itself that is expensive,” said Kitz, explaining much of the costs relate to the environmental assessment and Water Act approval.
Following discussions, Coun. Louis Dechaine made the formal motion to proceed with the boat launch removal – subject to AEP’s approval. The motion was carried.