SCUGOG: Fees collected from commercial fill operations in Scugog Township will be directed toward a new reserve fund, which will, in part, go toward the municipality’s management of such sites as well as community projects.
In December, councillors concurred with a staff recommendation that such a reserve fund be established, which would collect fees from fill site operators as established under the township’s Site Alteration bylaw. Currently, sites importing soil in excess of 500 cubic metres are subject to a $1 fee per cubic metre. According to the report, the township has already collected more than $220,000 in fees from the Greenbank Airport fill project.
Although the report recommended using those fees, should the township decide in favour, to help fund a major financial request from the Port Perry Hospital Foundation, councillors opted to prioritize costs associated with hosting such sites (such as staff and potential legal expenses) over one project.
As worded in a new motion put forth by Councillor Wilma Wotten, any money over and above such expenses should be considered for community projects. Earlier this fall, the Foundation approached councillors with a $350,000 funding request for the ‘Your Hospital, Your Future’ campaign, which aims to raise $2.5 million to be put toward renovations in the patient wing of Lakeridge Health Port Perry.
A recommendation to also use such funds to finance a ‘streetlighting initiative’ in Scugog was also turned down by councillors. However, the matter of using the funds for new LED streetlights returned this week during discussion of the 2014 budget, after Regional Councillor Bobbie Drew indicated that it may be worth re-investigating the expenditure due to potential energy savings. Public Works Director Ian Roger indicated that LED lights save, on average, 50 per cent compared to traditional streetlights.