The Village of Morrin will sell a surplus emergency pump motor and electrical control panel which are no longer needed and which cost the municipality upwards of $100,000.
The decision was made at the Jan. 12 regular meeting of council.
Councillors heard the regular report of Public Works Foreman Dave Benci, who stated that the installation of the new emergency water pump at the pump house is the major project on the go right now.
Benci stated as the contractor began work new equipment has been installed and old equipment removed. The foreman stated a new electrical control panel has been installed along with new lights. Benci added that a new concrete pad will also be needed.
During his report he noted that some old items removed from the pump house will need to be disposed of, notably an electric motor which was just installed last year.
It was reported that the contractor doing the work has volunteered to try to find a buyer for that motor. Benci stated the electrical panel associated with that motor also needs to be disposed of along with some scrap metal that’s also surplus.
Benci stated the project cost for that surplus motor was around $100,000.
He noted during his report the motor only has about 10 hours of use on it and the control panel has about 70 hours on it.
During discussion councillors asked if the equipment could be used with the new pump, and Benci answered that as far as he knew it was not compatible with the new equipment.
Councillors also wondered if the company which supplied the equipment would buy it back but Benci didn’t seem optimistic about that.
It was also mentioned that it would probably be best to sell the two items together.
Councillors eventually passed a motion authorizing Benci to dispose of the scrap iron and also do some research into how the village could sell the old electric motor and control panel.
Come visit Minburn
Councillors discussed a letter from the County of Minburn encouraging people to consider the municipality as their new residential or business home. Minburn is located about 140 kms east of Edmonton.
Mayor Chris Hall stated the letter appeared to be part of a campaign that Minburn was conducting to attract new residents and business using social media and tax perks.
Coun. Lorraine MacArthur asked her peers what the existing businesses in Morrin would think of this council granting tax perks to new businesses.
Village Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Annette Plachner stated it may not be a great idea to give tax breaks to “the new guy” rather than the ones who are supporting the village.
Mayor Hall responded he was thinking more about attracting large businesses or employers unlike anything that’s currently in Morrin.
In any event, Hall stated Minburn’s campaign was food for thought and possibly something for Morrin to consider.
As councillors discussed the idea, it was noted any tax breaks would apply for one or possibly two years at most.
Hall used as an example the Hamlet of Swalwell located in Kneehill County, which according to the 2011 census had 101 residents and which has also attracted a candy manufacturer.
After this suggestion, councillors began to discuss where in the village a new business might locate, and the status of previously contaminated sites also came up.
Benci stated he would look into the various sites mentioned and report back to councillors at a future meeting.
Property tax sale
Plachner also briefly mentioned a property tax sale to be undertaken by the village. It was noted a special meeting may be held for this project but that this issue will be discussed again by council in March.
CAO Plachner submitted her regular financial report to councillors and stated that everything seems to be on budget at year end.
However, she pointed out there are still some outstanding invoices from 2021 coming in and those will affect the financial report.
Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative reporter