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Municipalities to apply for grants to support regional recreation study

A regional recreation study is expected to cost about $100,000.
sports and rec

ST. PAUL/ELK POINT - Following a joint municipalities meeting held on June 29, the County of St. Paul, Town of St. Paul, Town of Elk Point, and Summer Village of Horseshoe Bay councils have agreed that municipalities should submit grant applications under several programs in an effort to obtain funding to undertake a St. Paul-Elk Point Regional Master Recreation Feasibility Study.

"We anticipate the cost of this study would be approximately $100,000," said County of St. Paul CAO Sheila Kitz during the regular monthly council meeting on July 13. The study would include regional stakeholder and user consultations; user area analysis; competitive facility analysis; sensitivity analysis; site analysis; governance, service delivery framework, and analysis of regional service delivery options; and recommendations.

Over the course of the next year, there are three grants that will be applied for. If one grant isn't successful, the next will be applied for. 

"First, the County will apply under the Canada Community Revitalization Fund. This fund helps communities build and improve community infrastructure. It is a 75 per cent grant program with a July 23, 2021 deadline," said Kitz. 

"The second grant program would be the Alberta Community Partnership Grant Program. This program traditionally has assisted municipalities in regional planning, frameworks, and service delivery. We anticipate that the region could access up to $200,000 for this type of project with no municipal contribution," according to the County of St. Paul.

If neither of the first two grants are successful, the third option will have to be referred to the County of St. Paul Community Association to apply under the Community Facility Enhancement Program. The grant program is eligible to societies, but not municipalities. Generally, projects are funded 50 per cent.

County of St. Paul council agreed to proceed with all three recommendations. 

The St. Paul Elk Point Regional Recreation Feasibility Study could help "leverage the work done on the Master Recreation Plan dated August 2019," according to information presented at the County of St. Paul meeting. It could also enable regional collaboration around the use of regional community infrastructure.

The plan would also "enable regional asset management, including the maintenance and improvement of existing infrastructure, the development and planning of new 'shovel ready' infrastructure, the ability to maximize use and benefit of regional infrastructure, and the ability to respond to aging infrastructure needs." A final aim of the project would be to increase the success of and vitality of regional communities through partnerships, "to maximize the use of regional community infrastructure for the overall benefit and quality of life of residents and visitors to the region."

The budget for municipality's would depend on which grant is successful. 

The topic also came up during the Town of St. Paul council meeting on July 12. The Town of St. Paul also approved to move ahead with applying for grant funding for a regional study.

The Town of Elk Point has also recently agreed to move ahead with the grant applications.



Janice Huser

About the Author: Janice Huser

Janice Huser has been with the St. Paul Journal since 2006. She is a graduate of the SAIT print media journalism program, is originally from St. Paul and has a passion for photography.
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