North Dundas to sole source contract
WINCHESTER – North Dundas council voted to sole source engineering of a new well for its water system to avoid up to 12 months of delay.
North Dundas has been slowly moving through the environmental assessment process to add a new well on Lafleur Road to increase water capacity to the water system. Water supply issues have limited development in areas where users must connect to the water system in North Dundas.
At the March 7 council meeting, Interim Director of Environmental Services Danielle Ward explained to council that the EA process required a decision to either sole-source or follow the government procurement process for engineering for the project.
J.L. Richards was contracted for the EA process, and was the recommended sole-source contractor at a cost of $250,950 plus HST.
North Dundas applied to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program for the project and received $3.6 million towards the original $5 million project cost. Since that application, the well project cost now exceeds $6 million. Ward told council that if they wanted to use some of the ICIP funds to cover the engineering costs North Dundas has to follow federal procurement guidelines, which will delay the project by a further six-to-12 months. Sole-sourced costs are ineligible for ICIP funding. Of the two options presented, council agreed sole sourcing the engineering, to be paid for through the capital water charges, was the better option.
“There will be no saving of money, just a loss of time if we don’t sole-source,” said mayor Tony Fraser.
Councillor Matthew Urhig asked for clarification that anything over and above the original $5 million applied for through ICIP was not covered by that program anyways. This was confirmed by Ward.
Councillor Gary Annabel agreed that the sole-sourced option was preferred. “Option one looks cleaner,” he said.
In Ward’s report to council, she outlined that the construction steps of the project will still be competitively procured and will be funded through the ICIP grant. Once the engineering study is complete, total costs for construction will be brought back to council.
A report before North Dundas council outlined the honourarium, benefits and expenses allowed for elected officials in 2022. Mayor Tony Fraser received a total remuneration of $41,214.16 which included an honourarium of $30,333.41 plus expenses, payment of the township portion of payroll taxes, and expense allowance. Changes in provincial law added mandatory Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System contributions to all members of council, paid by the municipality.
Now former deputy mayor Allan Armstrong received a total of $21,056 in remuneration. Former councillor, now deputy mayor Theresa Bergeron received a total remuneration of $18,841.33 in 2022. Councillor Garry Annabel received $19,422.28, now-former councillor John Thompson $16,604.28, councillor John Lennox $2,770.75, and councillor Matthew Uhrig $2,409.52.
In all, elected officials cost North Dundas $122,318.47 in 2022.
North Dundas is adding a sixth location for its popular ‘Meet me on Main Street’ community event. In addition to the five locations (Morewood, South Mountain, Hallville, Chesterville, and Winchester), Marionville will be added to the MMOMS event.
Founded in 2017 as part of the Canada 150th celebrations in North Dundas, the events close the main street of the village for an eventing for live entertainment, food vendors, and more.
The Winchester event is not going to be downtown this year due to planned construction in the area. Instead that event will be located at the 100 Club Park.
The MMOMS series will start in Morewood June 28, and continue to Marionville (July 5), South Mountain (July 12), Hallville (July 19), Chesterville (July 26) and conclude in Winchester on August 2.
Phillip Blancher, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Morrisburg Leader