The Mayor for Ritchot says he is not yet certain how a regional wastewater treatment facility will impact residents financially.
On Thursday it was announced that the provincial and federal governments will contribute a combined $39 million towards the $110 million project. The remaining funds will come from the four jurisdictions benefiting from the facility; including the Rural Municipalities of Hanover, Ritchot and Tache and the town of Niverville. The four municipalities will contribute a combined $71 million and the breakdown will be determined by the use of communities.
Ritchot Mayor Chris Ewen says it is too early to say what this will mean for taxes. He notes they will take out a debenture and his expectation is that the payback would happen over 20 to 25 years.
"That's going to make sure that the costs are reduced to an affordable opportunity for our municipality," he adds.
Ewen says Hanover Reeve Stan Toews has been a key player in making this project happen. Toews has been serving as Chair of the Red-Seine-Rat Wastewater Cooperative (RSRWC).
"I can't thank the Chair enough for the investment, the time commitments he's made," shares Ewen. "The effort he's put into this, especially when he's finishing up his municipal political life."
In fact, Ewen says the help and expertise of Toews is one of the main reasons why this regional wastewater treatment facility is even happening.
Ewen adds there are communities in his municipality that are on the verge of needing additional lagoon space, particularly because of strong population growth over the last half dozen years.
The facility will be built north of Niverville. Niverville Mayor Myron Dyck says because they will be piping from various communities, the RSRWC board determined the facility should go up in a central location.
"It made sense to put it in Niverville, just based on centricity and opportunity of land and things like that," he adds.
Dyck says this facility will provide opportunity for growth. He notes projects like this one are very significant because without the necessary infrastructure in a region, housing prices dip, people start moving away and there is less foot traffic walking into businesses.
Meanwhile, Tache Mayor Justin Bohemier refers to this as "the next steps for the future." He notes this is the beginning of being able to expand and being able to take care of future needs. Bohemier says it will be money well spent.
"I see this as a great investment for us, we've got two lagoons and this is definitely going to help take some strain off of that," notes Bohemier. "We are investing into this for the future. This is going to be a great investment for us.