With application deadlines looming, Moose Jaw City Council has selected the two projects that they will submit for a chance at millions in federal funding. There are several facets to the funding that's available but all will be partnerships with the feds or with Ottawa and the provincial government.
City Engineer Josh Mickleborough made a presentation to council this week, asking for direction on what two projects to submit and what held a higher priority, while still matching criteria.
"The current infrastructure funding priorities include drinking water, waste water, highways and roads as disaster mitigation." explained Mickleborough. "Further, any projects must support economic growth for the future, a cleaner, improved quality environment, strengthening and supporting sustainable communities, growth in export and trade and meeting the opportunities and challenges of growth."
The Buffalo Pound water line was picked as number one and is estimated at $20 million. The second application will be for funding to develop the new industrial park on the south side of the city at a cost of $2 million.
During the discussion, Mickleborough was asked why cast iron replacement wasn't selected as a project for the application and he explained that it just didn't check off enough of the criteria boxes to ensure serious consideration by the review committee, especially in the area of economic development.
He also pointed out that it's really a shifting of funds anyhow. Depending on approval, the city could see over $15 million, freeing up tax dollars for other projects such as cast iron watermain replacement so it was better to apply for the projects that would be most likely to succeed and then move than money around to other projects that need cash.