Lake Cowichan gets more than $1 million for water mains thanks to Clean Water and Wastewater Fund

The Town of Lake Cowichan has once again received good news from federal and provincial funding

The Town of Lake Cowichan has once again received good news from federal and provincial funding sources which are investing over $1 million in a series of water main upgrades.

The town was one of 35 recipients from across the province whose projects will be partially financed under the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund, a program targeting initiatives that contribute to the improvement of municipal water infrastructure.

Peter Fassbender, minister of Community, Sport and Culture Development, described these investments through the CWWF as an example of a successful partnership between the federal and provincial government.

“The Clean Water and Wastewater Fund will enable local governments to meet immediate priorities in critical infrastructure while supporting a cleaner and healthier environment for communities across B.C.,” he said in a press release.”Today’s investments will build stronger communities long into the future by providing increased economic growth.”

His federal counterpart, Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, also recognized the importance of working with B.C., emphasizing the job-creation potential of these investments.

“The Government of Canada recognizes that we need a solid partnership with all orders of government to support infrastructure and create good, well-paying jobs that can help the middle class grow and prosper today,” Sohi said in a written statement. “We are very pleased to have reached this agreement for clean water and wastewater so that British Columbia communities can address their specific infrastructure priorities, while helping grow the middle class with good, well-paying jobs.”

The province is contributing $680,177 and the federal government is contributing $448,916, leaving the Town of Lake Cowichan to pay $231,261 (which is 17 per cent of the total cost).

At the Oct. 4 public works and environmental services committee meeting, mayor Ross Forrest expressed his satisfaction with the large contributions to some of the town’s water mains.

“This is a huge, long overdue improvement. Some of that infrastructure, water mains that we have were put in in the 1940s… It is nice to get to announce this,” he said.

Forrest told the committee that Lake Cowichan’s application for funding targeted five areas: Wilson Road ($103,350), Park Road ($213,684), Greendale Road ($699, 875), and the water lines running under the Cowichan River at the foot bridge ($70,500) and Greendale Trestle ($149,276). There is also a contingency budget of $123,669.

He thanked staff for their work, pointing out the series of successful grant applications submitted recently.

“It really makes a huge difference for our community when we can do infrastructure jobs of this magnitude at only 17 per cent cost to the town of Lake Cowichan,” said Forrest.

“It’s awfully good news. And this is separate from the $5 million we got for the water treatment facility.”