A Four Part Series
Note to readers: This is the second part of a special guelphspeaks exclusive series of the state of the city and the many unanswered questions that taxpayers should be asking. As usual, guelphspeaks urges all viewers to tell their friends and family to follow the blog that works to keep citizens aware of how their city works. No smoke and mirrors, just the unvarnished commentary and facts.
Posted September 20, 2012
In six years, city council, dominated by Mayor Karen Farbridge and her majority cadre of environmentalists and heritage supporters , has increased city debt, property tax revenues, user fees and annual budgets. They’ve done it to accommodate its unsustainable drive to turn the city into the waste reduction, recycling and reusable capital of Canada.
And they’ve done it on the backs of we taxpayers.
Some $100 million has been spent or will be spent on projects all of which have failed to meet expectations or predictable results.
Here are Some questions that need answers:
The Watson Road organic compost plant
Why build a $34 million compost plant that is six times the size needed to process Guelph’s wet waste of 10,000 tonnes per year?
What are the terms of the contract(s) with Maple Reinders, designer and builder of the compost plant?
How was this compost project financed?
What are the carrying costs of operating the plant?
What are the operational costs of the plant?
Were there change orders approved during construction and during the testing period of the plant?
What was the taxpayer’s cost of these orders?
Was there a business plan developed before the project contract was awarded?
How is the compost plant going to be self-sustainable with only half its 60,000 tonne capacity being utilized?
When will this plant become approved by the Ministry of Environment and start producing useable compost?
Why was it necessary to purchase 900 tonnes of wet waste from Hamilton to conduct a second trial run of the plant?
With tonnes of compost being created at full production, how is it going to be disposed?
What is the city going to do about the odours still emanating from the plant during the recent test?
Why ignore a Ministry of Environment (MOE) 2009 directive of allowing biodegradable plastic bags to be delivered to the new compost plant?
Why, instead of using the established system of collecting pre-sorted waste, contract to spend another $15 million on an untried collection system involving custom made trucks and bins?
Was this contract tendered?
Finally, why are Guelph’s waste management salary and benefits cost of $65.05 per capita so much higher compared to Waterloo Region’s per capita cost of $12.47 for performing the same work?
Tomorrow, Part Three with more questions about sewage treatment needing answers concerning your city.