I would like to address a few rumours floating around the town of Bienfait.
I have heard that the previous council had no interest in growing the town. To set the record straight, I will show that this rumour is false, along with so many other rumours about the previous council. All comments in this item can be verified by council minutes.
In June 2007, the council looked at expanding west of Bienfait, in the RM of Estevan south and west of the school. The time was not right for this project for the following reasons. Work was being done to supply water and sewer to the residences north of the tracks, at the request of the public health department, and at great expense to the town. The expense of this project limited any funds available for expansion at that time.
At the April 24, 2008 meeting, a motion was made to have a mass mail-out to residents of Bienfait regarding the rezoning of the soccer field from urban reserve to residential, as there was a developer interested in building homes. The survey came back with 116 residents responding, and was recorded as 36 in favour and 80 against. The proposed project was put on hold at that time.
There was also a company looking for an area to put new trailer homes in our town. The area chosen for this site was between the CP Rail tracks and Railway Street. The outside road would have been removed. The area was surveyed and would have housed seven or eight trailer home lots. Nothing was developed in this area, as the interested party did not get back to Council with a plan.
A local resident approached Council to subdivide a piece of property he owned east on Shurygalo Raod. This property would have given the town 10 more residential lots. A plan was to be put in place. I do not believe that there has been anything done with this proposed development.
To say that there was nothing done by the previous council is completely false. There was a complete upgrade done to the water treatment plant. There was work done at the sewer lift, and new valves, piping and drenching of the lagoon. There were plans in place to build a structure over Cistern No. 1, which houses 35,000 gallons of water. There was trouble with the sewer line deteriorating on Aldridge Street, and that had to be relined at a cost of $48,850, plus GST, which was approved by the previous Council.
The new equipment purchased by the previous Council is as follows: a new skidsteer, a new one-ton truck, a snowblower and a quarter-section of land adjacent to the landfill, which was to be sold to the landfill operator. Everything purchased was paid for, and a good reserve was left for future upgrades.
I certainly hope that this puts the rumours to rest.
Bruce Dalziel and Garry Hammett
Former Bienfait council members