Concrete pads at the two Bashaw ball diamonds have been installed to save time and expense in dealing with grass and weeds. The bleachers are also now back in place after having been cleaned up and painted. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Bashaw Community hall troubles still whirling around

Council waiting for info on reasons for expensive repeated repairs

A discussion on a proposed maintenance contract for the community hall has left the town looking for a solution.

The subject came up at Bashaw town council’s meeting on Aug. 17 as a follow up to a meeting held earlier with the company — the name was not provided — that is maintaining the hall’s heating and hot water systems.

CAO Theresa Fuller explained there have been numerous calls for service to deal with the four rooftop heating/air conditioning unit, which has cost more than $12,000. However, the system still doesn’t work as it should as the same issues keep cropping up.

That led her to investigate the idea of an annual mechanical and building management system maintenance contract. Combined, the contracts would initially cost just under $6,500 per year, with annual increases over a five-year term, with a projected 20 year cost of about $158,000.

The issue many on council had with the contract wasn’t the price but that the company hasn’t been able to properly repair the unit.

“They keep coming back, from what I see in these pages, for the same issue and I don’t see them being corrected,” said Coun. Bryan Gust.

Coun. Lynn Schultz also has concerns about entering into a contract with a company unable to figure out repairs, adding, “A maintenance contract is no good until everything has been fixed.”

The fact there has been a variety of different technicians working on the problems is also an issue, stated Fuller, who suggested one solution might be to go away from computer regulated units and back to manual operation.

In the end, with public works foreman Murray Holroyd not at the meeting, council determined it best for administration to go back to the drawing board and come back to council with further ideas instead of, as Coun. Rosella Peterman put it, “council sitting here spinning our wheels looking for a solution.”

Other business

Fuller also told council about an Aug. 4 break-in to the town shop, this was second such incident in three months. This time one of the town trucks was loaded up with a generator and other tools, with the truck found the next morning along Highway 21 empty. It’s estimated the items stolen were worth around $4,000 and an insurance claim has been filed.

Council was also updated on the status of several projects that have either been completed or are nearly done.

Both of the RV dumping stations — located at the Bashaw Municipal Campground along Highway 53 and at Heritage Park — have had the coin-operation water and sewer mechanisms installed. The stations take quarters, loonies and toonies with patrons paying $2 for sewer and water prices varying depending on the amount used.

The water tower has been painted white and the contractor is scheduled to return to paint the town emblem and name on it. Even without it, Mayor Penny Shantz stated she has received several remarks from people stating they love the new look.

A dock proposed for the town’s trout pond is being revisited. Coun. Schultz will be working with public works to figure out exactly what will work best — fixed or floating. The work is planned to be done this fall, but depending on the decision made, may be done over the winter.

An update was given on the status of the regional water line being connected, with Fuller telling council it may be October until Bashaw is no longer using its wells for residents.

Construction of the line, as well as a balancing chamber, has taken longer than the water commission anticipated, which has also meant Bashaw has been selling more water than was predicted and may lead to an unexpected revenue windfall at year-end.

Also on the water side, an engineer is working on providing the town with a price on constructing a non-potable bulk water station for the public. It would use two of the town’s wells once the new water line is operational.

In order to do that though, the town is awaiting for Alberta Environment to process an application to amend the use for those wells.

This story has been corrected to reflect the proper amount of the community hall maintenance contracts.