Westwind Weekly News
Stirling Council kicked off their bi-monthly regular meeting Feb. 1 with the ‘Pals of the Pool’ delegation and their secretary, Anne Fry.
Fry informed council their group has $21,000 of grant money that needs to be spent in a short time.
After discussion on how to spend the grant money, council decided to move forward and put artificial turf around the pool.
Fry pointed out the installation of such a project would cost an additional $10,000, bringing the total to $31,000.
She asked council if there was money available from the Village to cover the additional cost and said she understood council’s dilemma that funds are tight.
Chief Administrative Officer Mike Selk said keeping in mind with space and labour costs, another viable option could be to lay concrete instead of turf.
Fry said that doing the project in concrete and creating a kabana could keep the project under $21,000.
Selk added a decision needed to be made soon because the grant has to be spent within the next few months.
Coun. Jason Edwards enquired if administration was in contact with the Town of Raymond and their swimming pool. Selk said after a number of discussions with Raymond’s Public Works, administration’s opinion and preference was to go to an artificial turf.
Edwards asked about quotes, and Selk said they have been doing a lot of price checking but have been looking into Raymond’s information in installing their artificial turf.
“I support the concept of it but I’d like to see a little more due diligence with regard to pricing,” said Edwards.
Coun. Trevor Lewington’s recommended a follow-up on Edwards’ request for due diligence and to provide a secondary quote and alternatively, if artificial turf is the preference from public works, then council has no choice but to narrow the scope, adding there is no flexibility in the capital budget.
Lewington reminded the group council has to wait for an answer from the province in April when the budget is announced.
Mayor Ben Nilsson asked the group to come back in two weeks with more information on quotes and costs.
The Pals of the Pool complied and will ask grant officials to provide them an extension for two weeks.
The second delegation featured Suzanne Montague, Chair of the Municipal Library Board.
She addressed council about the middle room between the Town office and the library. She said the space has been utilized extensively for their child and adult programs and is crucial in maintaining that space.
She added that without the space, the library would have to cut costs, creating a loss to the community.
Montague said the board understands that some of the space is needed for the ATB Agency.
Selk told council there is definitely a need for flex space or multi-purpose space.
He spoke about the addition within the Village office, more specifically, proposed space in the very back of the building and by adding some walls, it could make the expansion cost effective.
Selk said the additional spacing could possibly provide flex space for council chambers.
The discussion shifted to the space allocated for the ATB project and the impending construction work.
Edwards did not want to use the word ‘experiment,’ but acknowledged he was curious on ATB’s existence, perception, and revenues within the Village office.
“I don’t want to see the library lose their space,” he said. “I don’t want to see us spend a bunch of capital money on what, in my mind, is not a sure thing yet. I think it will probably become a sure thing, but I don’t want to spend a bunch of renovation money until I have that answer that ‘yes, this is a sure thing’ ‘yes, we can use this size of space for them.’”
He added the ATB revenues could help with the costs and labour of the project.
Lewington made a motion to provide Administration direction to continue the development of a master plan for the expansion of the building. The motion was carried.