While many communities in Saskatchewan may say money and funding will top the list at this year’s SUMA convention, at least one mayor said a discussion centering on cooperation, coordination and communication must also take place.
Lumsden Mayor Bryan Matheson said his community was grateful in 2016 to receive provincial and federal funding for a waste water treatment plant, but wonders about redundancy.
“We were very fortunate to get third-third-third funding,” Matheson said. “It makes it possible for us to do this. The funding is often received by municipalities, but we need to try to work with our provincial government to have a more cohesive action that allows people to work together on a regional basis.”
Matheson added Regina also recently built a new waste water treatment plant. Matheson said he believes there should have been some government coordination that allowed the two communities to work together on their similar projects.
“When Regina, who is only a stone’s throw from us built a huge waste water treatment facility and we’re building a miniature in our community, “Matheson said. “Somehow, there should have been some government coordination that allowed the two communities to work together through a pipeline to the city.”
The cost of the project was estimated at just over 20-million dollars. The town of Lumsden’s share was just below 7-million dollars.
Despite these concerns, Matheson added he’s grateful for a yearly opportunity to voice concerns like this with SUMA delegates.
“When we have so many small communities who don’t have the resources of the cities, or even of Lumsden,” Matheson said. “They need assistance, they need leadership from our senior government and of SUMA to help them deal with issues that they don’t have the resources to deal with, in-house.”
SUMA’s annual convetion runs from February 4 to 7 at the Queensbury Convention Centre.