Carbonear to delay proposed infrastructure projects

Melissa Jenkins
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Town to receive one-fifth of requested multi-year capital works funding

It is unlikely the Town of Carbonear will be moving ahead with many proposed infrastructure projects in the next three years, unless another method of funding is made available.

The town of some 4,700 residents was one of 22 municipalities that applied for multi-year capital works funding from the provincial government earlier this year. Those municipalities ranged in population from 1,764 in the Town of Victoria to 106,172 in the City of St. John’s (as per the 2011 Canada census).

Carbonear’s application was for $6 million, which was on par with the previous approval for municipal capital works funding of $5.8 million.

A priority list of proposed projects was sent to The Compass by town administrator Cynthia Davis. Those included water, sewer and street upgrading of Mahaney’s Lane and Bond Street, Lemarchant Road phase II and III, the completion of London Road (phase III), Cross Roads and Water Street East bridge upgrades and the Pike’s Lane lift station upgrade.

Each approved project is shared 80/20 between the provincial government and the town.

Not expected

It came as a surprise to some town councillors when the approved dollar figure came in at $1.25 million, one-fifth of the proposed amount.

The chair of the town’s finance committee, Coun. Ray Noel, sent his response in an email to The Compass.

“The amount received is much less than the $6 million for which we applied,” Noel wrote. “(We) certainly would have liked to received more, but (we) have done very well in recent years and (I) am grateful for that.”

Out of the 22 municipalities, only Victoria was approved for less, some $580,000. The municipality applied for some $1.2 million.

Carbonear and Victoria are the only communities outside the greater St. John’s area to apply with an MHA that is not from the governing Progressive Conservatives. Liberal MHA Sam Slade has been the MHA for both municipalities since November 2013.

During the last term, six projects were approved for Carbonear: London Road phase I and II, Lemarchant Street phase I and various paving projects, including Valley Road, where the new Carbonear Academy is located.

At the town’s regular council meeting May 5, it was revealed which projects it would be investing in, and which would be placed on hold until other funding became available.

Lamarchant Street phase II and the Pike’s Lane lift station were priority.

One priority was given to Lamarchant due to issues with water build-up during heavy precipitation. Phase II is expected to begin this summer.

The lift station will be doubling in size. Major issues with the station have been raised in recent months. And since it handles most of the town’s sewer, the project became top priority.

Determining funding

In an email from Hugh Donnan, spokesperson for the Department of Municipal Affairs, The Compass has learned the criteria for approval.

“A number of factors are considered in determining how much funding a community gets under the multi-year capital works program. The factors include; assessment of greatest need, alignment with key departmental priority areas, such as the provision of water and wastewater services, and consideration of prior years’ investments,” the email said.

An assessment was made by the municipal affairs staff, and Minister Steve Kent made the final decision on which towns received what funding.

Communities of smaller populations than Carbonear have received funding between $ 1.7 mil lion (Springdale) and $2.6 million (Lewisporte). Neighbouring Bay Roberts, whose population is some 5,800, was approved for $3 million.

Other funded projects

In the past, the town has received additional funding for recreation.

“It is worth noting that since 2011, the department has invested $7.4 million cost-shared (80/20) in key projects in the town such as water and sewer, paving and upgrades to recreation facilities for the recent NL Summer Games held in the community,” Donnan wrote.

Additional funding had been made available for the Newfoundland and Labrador Summer Games in 2012, which included upgrades to the town’s sports facilities. The games were co-hosted with Harbour Grace.

The district’s MHA at that time was PC Jerome Kennedy, who had held cabinet posts during his tenure in government.

As for now, Davis confirmed the town is committed to the projects and will proceed as soon as possible.

“Council has committed to making improvements to the remaining portion of ( London Road) from where phase II will end to Columbus Drive,” Davis explained. “The extent of the improvements has not been determined at this time.

“The town does not have funds available in their operating budget to complete the capital projects included in the MYCW application. Council would require another $4,437,500 to complete the other projects …”

Davis confirmed repairs and maintenance to streets and infrastructure would still go ahead, but limited, to keep taxes in the future at a reasonable level.

Melissa.jenkins@tc.tc

Organizations: The Compass, Progressive Conservatives, Carbonear Academy Department of Municipal Affairs

Geographic location: Carbonear, Victoria, London Road Canada Bond Street Lemarchant Road Cross Roads Water Street East Lemarchant Street Valley Road Lamarchant Street Newfoundland and Labrador Lewisporte Bay Roberts

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Recent comments

  • Arse out of me pants... No More!
    May 22, 2014 - 06:47

    I like Pee Cee comments, I quote from below: "The truth is half the district don't care about making progress, they are only looking out for themselves as they are small town, small minds self-serving individuals". That describes the pirate haven mentality of the people of "Tin Can Cove" aka Carbonear... As for comments from "Pot Hole" below, I quote, "We elected Sammy, knowing he would stand up for us." Sammy Claws is going to stand up for HIMSELF! End of story... Here is an example of what to expect: Terry Roberts of the Compass newspaper writes Carbonear Mayor SS's slogan is - putting people first - Is Mr. Roberts joking? We hear so much talk about entitlement and privilege these days. Only, 3 years ago apx., Sammy Claws built a new house in a high, isolated, desolate, and, wind-swept area of Carbonear known as the Top of Bunker Hill. The very top portion had a cow’s path for a road. To the disappointment of other areas of Carbonear, much longer in need of improvements, Town services were quickly extended to the Top of Bunker’s Hill, and, at the Town’s expense, as evident below. Motion 13-220 Council Meeting [Sept. 16, 2013] Be it Resolved to proceed to complete street upgrading and paving for Top of Bunker Hill from the towns revenues Sammy Clause was called back into the meeting and assumed the chair. Drainage Improvements Bunker Hill [Council Meeting April 16, 2012] Resolved that the Town of Carbonear award the contract for Drainage Improvements for Bunker Hill to Concord Paving in the amount of $42,229.23 Sammy Claws was called back into the meeting and assumed the chair. Motion 12-123 [Council Meeting April 16, 2012] Resolved that the Town of Carbonear approve for payment Invoice #5469 to Harris & Associates in the amount of $3,109.76 for engineering fees regarding Improvements Bunker Hill. Sammy Claws was called back into the meeting and assumed the chair. Resolved to amend Motion 13-169 as follows: Carbonear Council [Meeting Sept. 09, 2013] Resolved to request an approval to borrow from the Department of Municipal Affairs in the amount of $250,000 to finance the completion of street upgrading and paving, Sammy Claws was called back into the meeting and assumed the chair… Sammy Clause had to leave the meeting each time? … (hahahaha) How come the Top of Bunker Hill got built up so quickly, when there are many other areas of the Town which have been trying to get road improvements dating back long before Sammy Claws ever built a house on the Top of Bunker Hill? What behavior will one will see from a sitting government member? Run that slogan by me again… putting people first,? (jejejejeje) (hahahaha) *************** If you visit the Town of Carbonear’s website you can view all the notes of the Council’s meetings. The Town will never get ahead with the crowd who turns a blind eye to such goings on, thinking that a few crumbs will fall their way.

    • Observant citizen
      May 22, 2014 - 14:43

      Those are all very great points and facts that are presented above. This article really shines a light on a district getting what they vote for. What happened to good ol "Sam for a cause" formally known as "Sammy Clause... ho ho ho", fighting for the people of his district? Perhaps we can get Jake Doyle, or maybe someone from the compass, to investigate the work that was supposed to be finished on London Road, the money was there to finish this project but I am sure if you dug a little you would find the funding some how got redirected to a certain hill... *cough*bunker hill*cough* Now that would be a story for the compass!! Slimy Sam, fits the liberal criteria perfectly! It blows my mind why a district that saw so much prosperity and infrastructure would elect this individual(party).... How about we use the 1.25 million dollars to check the water quality, surely there must be something wrong with it... Unfortunately the ones on council that actually care about the residents are the ones scrutinized the most, just goes to show that people don't want a better area to live in!

    • Pavement Less
      May 22, 2014 - 21:18

      Arse out of my pants has highlighted but one example of where it was always "Sammy first" He will ignor people until it comes time to vote and everything that went wrong will be blamed on others, gov party, his leader, the various town councils. Carbonear has $15 mill over 3 yrs, other towns had more. Then again receiving $7.4 million in cap works, plus a $30 million school, $150 million hospital extention was not good enough for the people of Carb-Harbour Grace. Now to add salt to the wounds the unincorporated Local Service Districts (LSD's) will receive pavement and they don't pay mun taxes, putting Sammy first. How will he benefit from that???

  • Paul Baldwin
    May 21, 2014 - 14:43

    I guess the council will have to buy $500 dinner tickets to Liberal fundraisers now.

    • Paul Burke
      May 22, 2014 - 21:27

      Now that the prov gov contribution is cut off, Carbonear don't have nearly enough money to cover its needs. Many raods need pavement, water - sewer work and residents still want additional programs and services added. I suspect if $500 dinners would solve the issue, a few would be bought. The sad part is the people have to do with less, because they voted for change. I guess letters requesting road work etc would diminish for a while, lmao.

  • Per Cee
    May 20, 2014 - 21:31

    The people of the district did not want better. They get what they voted for. They wanted change and got it, they got less money, less grants, less everything from the Prov Gov. The truth is half the district don't care about making progress, they are only looking out for themselves as they are small town, small minds self-serving individuals. Sammy won't know or ever get the money that Kennedy or Reid got the district, because he is not capable of the negotiating or manoeuvring within Gov. A good councillor/mayor but certainly so MHA. Carbonear, H.G, and Victoria et al will get what you deserve, nothing. Mitchelmore, Joyce and the regular hounds will get more, despite the fact they are from small useless communities which offer little to NL, as they can speak for themselves and against the Gov.

  • Pot Hole
    May 20, 2014 - 21:22

    Don't worry residents, I spoke to the boys the other night and a plan is in place for Carbonear. We elected Sammy, knowing he would stand up for us and no doubt he will it do it. We may not continue with the millions we have received over the past few years but and we and Sammy will get Carbonear in tip top shape, just like he did with Bunkers Hill before leaving council. The bigger Carbonear community only getting $500,000 less over three years compared to Victoria, means nothing, Carbonear has more of a business tax base and can afford to keep everything together for the people outside of Carbonear to use. Show me the money!

    • Sam
      May 21, 2014 - 08:40

      Doesn't Sammy live on Bunker Hill?

  • AL
    May 20, 2014 - 18:31

    The criteria in deciding what projects are approved come down to one item. Ministers decision. Carbonear now will have to wait until Sammy Clause gets to cross the floor. Seems the PC cabinet has already given up on getting the seat back in the next election.