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New Tecumseth Council approves $121 million deal with Collingwood

August 25, 2022   ·   0 Comments

The Town of New Tecumseth has signed off on a water supply agreement with Collingwood.

Council approved the new contract in a 9-1 vote during a Special Council meeting on Thursday, August 18.

The new contract is related to the $121 million expansion at the Raymond A. Barker Water Treatment Plant in Collingwood.

Town CEO Blaine Parkin said that the original deal included 6,000 cubic metres of water that was in the original volume purchased in the original water supply agreement, but over the past 13 years, the Town has been receiving around 9,500 cubic meters per day, and paying for the additional water.

The Town “hasn’t purchased the 3,500 cubic metre volume difference,” Parkin said. “That is actually being incorporated into the purchase of capacity in this agreement. We are been receiving 9,500 cubic metres per day.”

As of 2027, the demand for water is predicted to be 13,400 cubic metres.

The agreement contains a clause that will allow the Town to back out of the agreement if “the tender comes in at ten per cent higher than the original budget, New Tecumseth then has the option to remove itself from the entire arrangement.”

If this happened, the Town would only have ownership of and be entitled to 6,500 cubic metres.

Under the agreement, the Town of New Tecumseth would be required to pay $71 million to cover its share of the cost of upgrades to the water treatment plant.

Ward 4 Councillor Fran Sainsbury expressed concerns that there is no real plan as to future growth in the town.

“I’m concerned that we’re doing all of this this in good faith at great expense and it’s to plan the future, and the costing is very expensive and a lot of it is to be paid for with development charges, and because we are on hold ‘til the plan opens up, and the MCR is so far behind. All they did was tell us the numbers. We have no idea where they want us to put the growth.”

Ward 6 Councillor Stephanie MacLellan voted against the deal.

“If the Province is going to shove this development down our throat, I think they should shove some money down our throat too,” MacLellan said. “The real estate market is not what it was last year, or the year before. It changes a lot year to year. This is an insane amount of money that doesn’t really directly affect the residents that are already here, it mostly benefits developers. What if the growth doesn’t come?”

Council approved the new contract by a vote of 9-1.

By Brian Lockhart

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