WHEREAS the Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership Program requires municipalities to utilize private contractors and engineering firms in performing work under this program;AND WHEREAS municipalities should be afforded the opportunity to utilize their own work forces and equipment to work off all or a part of their portion and receive credit for their share of the 75/25 (provincial/municipal) funding split;AND WHEREAS allowing the use of municipal forces and/or equipment under this program would in many cases ease the financial burden on local taxpayers;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties urge the Government of Alberta to afford municipalities the opportunity to utilize their own work force and equipment as a partnership under this program.
The Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership provides financial assistance to Alberta municipalities for the construction of priority water supply and treatment and wastewater treatment and disposal facilities.This program became effective April 1, 1991, replacing all then-existing water and wastewater treatment assistance programs.Funding is provided on a cost-sharing basis, thus maintaining the responsibility for decision making at the local level. First-dollar cost sharing also assists smaller communities in implementing essential water supply and wastewater treatment projects. All municipalities receiving assistance are encouraged to support Alberta companies supplying goods and services to the waterworks and wastewater industry. Municipalities are required to utilize private contractors and engineering firms when performing work under the program.
The AAMDC has no resolutions currently in effect with respect to this specific issue, although a similar resolution (ER3-00S) was passed at the spring 2000 convention, calling for flexibility to use municipal forces for projects funded under the Streets Improvement Program. In response to Resolution ER3-00S, Infrastructure Minister Ed Stelmach announced in early January 2001 that policy requirements relating to the Streets Improvement Program will be relaxed on a one-year trial basis, for the 2001 construction season, to allow municipalities to use their own forces for SIP-funded projects, “on occasion, where it can be proven to be more cost-effective or if the private sector does not have the capability.”