To date, the new aquatic/curling facility expansion is reported to be running at an additional $200,000 over budget – with further cost overruns anticipated to put the final tab around $48.6 million from its current $48.2 million.
At the request of Mayor Ivan Brooker, administration returned to council this week with an updated report of the cost overruns for the recent addition located at the Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre (SLSFSC).
The request was in response to an editorial published in the Cochrane Eagle last week, calling on council to request for administration to release the project overruns before the election, in an effort of transparency and fairness to the voting public.
Suzanne Gaida said that it could take upwards of another year to confirm total costs for the project.
The final invoices will not be available until after contractor Tango does its final inspection a full 12 months after the pool is open but Gaida estimates to have most of the final costs in “by the end of the year.”
Coun. Jeff Toews, who was a big supporter of the multisport project from the beginning, was apologetic to the community for the project overruns but is confident the facility will serve the community well and will reach cost recovery before the five year estimation.
“Our job on council is to try and create a complete community,” said Toews, emphasizing that the recently decommissioned Big Hill Leisure Pool was running at a deficit of roughly $500,000 per year and if the SLSFSC board is accurate with their calculation the new facility will run at a deficit of around $622,000 next year – then everything is headed in the right direction.
Council adopted a motion put forward by Coun. Mary Lou Eckmeier that administration present monthly updates on the project to inform council of any further cost overruns on the major capital project.