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Waterline replacement moved up in Elk Point’s capital plan

Town of Elk Point briefs from March 14 council meeting
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ELK POINT - A proposal to move one of the last areas slated for replacement of Elk Point’s cast iron waterlines up a notch or two in the town’s capital plan was brought to Elk Point Town council at the March 14 meeting, and was declared “a good deal” by Mayor Parrish Tung, while Deputy Mayor Dwayne Yaremkevich called it “The best thing I’ve heard today.”

CAO Ken Gwozdz told council that he had been approached by Nikiforuk Construction Ltd., the firm that replaced waterlines on both Circle Drive and Ravine Drive in 2017 and 2019, using a specialized process that does not require excavating and replacing the streets, and had also carried part of the cost that was not in the town’s budget at that time.

“Nikiforuk contacted us to see if we were interested,” Gwozdz said. The company indicated that their crew would be able to do the same on 52 Street from Railway Ave. to 49 Ave. and on 48 Ave. between 52 and 54 Streets, and is also willing to carry part of the cost over to 2023. Because of the former projects and Nikiforuk’s familiarity with the town’s infrastructure, the town would save $40,000 in engineering costs, he said. The town has $404,000 in MSI funding from last year and this year, “and they will carry the $183,000 we are short on the $584,281 quote.” The amount carried forward would then be paid out of the 2023 MSI funding.

Gwozdz said he was told the cost of supplies is on the way up, and could double if the project is delayed until its original time slot in the capital plan.

Council readily gave their approval for the replacement, which will be done this summer and fall.

The Nikiforuk crew was in town on March 7 for a much smaller project, replacement of the waterline under the Elk Point Municipal Library that had broken in early January, leaving the library without water for close to two months, and made quick work of the job, completing it in just one very stormy day, to the relief of library staff who are pleased to be moving back to normal pre-COVID activities.

New Bylaw, Animal Control officer

Elk Point’s new Bylaw Enforcement Officer and Animal Control Officer Michael Niessen dropped by to meet council at the beginning of Monday’s meeting, telling them he was born in Germany and raised in France before coming to Canada.

Following a time in the military, he has been a community peace officer in Edmonton, and also has experience in animal control. Niessen has a part time contract position with the town, and has already set up a Facebook page to keep in touch with the community.

Fire hall storage unit needed

Elk Point Fire Department’s Deputy Chief Bryce Osinchuk also visited the meeting on behalf of Fire Chief Kent Bernard, with a request to locate a 40-foot sea can immediately behind the fire hall for storage of items presently cluttering the fire hall, and possibly to also store the department’s boat.

The fire hall is located in an area zoned Direct Control, which permits outdoor storage units, and would not require a public hearing for its approval. Following discussion later in the meeting, council approved the request, with the fire department to be responsible to make the unit esthetically pleasing to traffic on both the Iron Horse Trail and 54 Street and to bring back a proposal to council for their review.

Policy updated

A revised Local Authorities Pension Plan policy that is now revised to align with current Town of Elk Point practices received council’s approval.

Shared services

Council also approved signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the County of St. Paul, the Town of St. Paul and the Town of Elk Point for shared Human Resources consulting services. The anticipated cost to Elk Point for this year is between $5,000 and $8,500.