(File photo)

(File photo)

Castor council facing no easy choices for arena

Castor’s town council has denied a contractor request to have one of the arena compressors overhauled prior to next season, preferring instead to look into other options.

The decision was made by council during their April 11 meeting where they were notified that Startec, the contractor that does the maintenance for the arena plant, is recommending the work.

According to chief administrative officer (CAO)Christopher Robblee, the quoted work for the compressor overhaul is around $14,000, however with the amount of unquoted work that also needs to be done, the total cost for the project could be in the neighbourhood of $18,000 to $20,000.

This request for council decision comes as administration is preparing information for council regarding replacement of the entire arena plant, including compressors, in 2023. If the overhaul on the compressor were to be done in 2022, according to Robblee, the town would not be able to get that money back.

With the report supplied by Startec, Robblee informed council that while the one (of two) compressor in the plant room could potentially last another season without the work, it is in such poor condition it could also potentially fail on start up. Without both compressors operating, the Castor arena would not be able to run next season.

Council instructed Robblee to get the information about the new plant room to them sooner rather than later, so they could potentially authorize the replacement of the equipment in 2022.

Robblee informed council that the reason they were looking at getting the work done in 2023 is due to the possibility of receiving a grant which would pay for 70 per cent of the project. The grant application window is already past for 2022, and if council were to authorize the work this year the town would be responsible for 100 per cent of the cost, paid for through a debenture.

That said, there is no guarantee that the town would receive the grant in 2023.

Costs for the replacement of the arena plant are estimated to be in between $500,000 and $600,000.

“I think we should take our chances,”said Coun. Kevin McDougall.

“I feel, if we’re going to (replace the plant), let’s do it.”

McDougall motioned to not do the overhaul on the compressor, which was carried. Robblee will bring information back to council at the next meeting, if not sooner through a special meeting of council.

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