Municipalities tweak sewer upgrade funding

City of Lacombe would pay a larger share of design work for a new regional sewer line under a newly updated cost-sharing agreement.

City of Lacombe would pay a larger share of design work for a new regional sewer line under a newly updated cost-sharing agreement.

Lacombe, County of Lacombe and Blackfalds have joined forces to bankroll just under $3 million worth of design work for a future sewage line expected to cost around $60 million.

Preliminary costs were shared based on population, future growth and other factors. Those numbers and shares changed after more detailed technical work was completed recently.

Lacombe would see its share increase from 36 per cent to 43 per cent or $1.07 million to $1.28 million. Blackfalds’s 45.5 per cent share drops to 41 per cent or $1.22 million from $1.35 million. The county will be responsible for 16 per cent, down from 18.5 per cent or $477,920 from $552,595.

Blackfalds council will vote on the new cost-sharing split on Tuesday. It must also go to the other councils for approval.

The three communities agreed to undertake the design work so they are ready to go if provincial funding becomes available. If the project isn’t funded communities are concerned they will end up spending millions on temporary fixes to their maxed-out treatment systems.

The municipal case was bolstered by the completion of a cost-benefit analysis that confirmed a regional sewer line was the best option based on financial, environmental and sustainability factors.

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