Creighton council report: $50k for economic development

The provincial trade ministry has approved sending the Town of Creighton $50,000 to assist the town’s ongoing economic development operations.

Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Trade and Export Development sent the town the sum “for the purpose of assisting with costs related to regional economic development,” said a letter sent to the town.

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Creighton previously applied for economic development funding from the province, but were denied last year. This recent announcement follows visits between cabinet ministers and Creighton officials, including one at the annual Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) convention in February.

“First off, we’re very happy to get this money. It will help us put more plans in place and move forward with preparations for the future,” said Creighton Mayor Bruce Fidler.

“What changed? Maybe they realized the situation that we’re in. I don’t know what exactly was on their minds, why they changed their mind from the first visit, but the second visit worked.”

The funds hinge on the town submitting a progress report to director of northern economic development Doug Howorko by March 31, 2020. The work and report will focus on retaining and expanding business, readiness assessments for investment, developing a transition strategy for economic development and coordinating a workshop for economic development and resiliency.

Northern Growing Abilities

Town council approved a $50,000 payment to the Northern Growing Abilities (NGA) group to support community projects, including the possible construction of a hydroponic greenhouse in Creighton.

The group provides people with disabilities living in the community a place for employment and opportunity. Previously, members of the group’s executive announced a hope to run a greenhouse in the community and sell vegetables to the public and to local businesses.

The $50,000 dedication will be used toward capital expenditures and will be transferred once all agreements, permits or other conditions are met. Town councillor Anita Rainville, a founding member of the NGA board, recused herself from the vote.

Water treatment

The town will soon spend almost $200,000 on an update to its water infrastructure.

Work on programming and communication services at the Creighton water treatment increased in cost, with council authorizing town chief administrative officer Paula Muench to sign a change in the scope and budget of the project

The project is estimated to cost $191,915, up from $174,215 in previous discussions with construction and planning firm Associated Engineering. The change means an increase of $17,700 to the cost of the initiative.

“There’s some extra programming that was required for where the tower is and for the water treatment plant,” said Muench.

“This will be covered under a funding agreement.”

The cause for the increase is due to a change in design for the project, said Muench.

“I think it was because when they actually put the tender in, he didn’t account for the bedrock and having to go higher,” she said.

Bylaw change

Councillors gave first, second and third reading to a bylaw covering tax certificate and tax information. The new bylaw will change the cost to obtain a tax certificate from $10 to $20 each.

“It was $10 for I’d say about 30 years,” said Muench. “When a lawyer requests a tax certificate, it’s getting information on a property.”

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