Lobbying pays off, says Big Lakes Reeve Ken Matthews

Richard Froese
For the Lakeside Leader

Big Lakes County was awarded almost $2.1 million in funding from the provincial government on May 31 to replace one bridge and three culverts. A total of $2,096,597 was approved under Alberta’s Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program (STIP) for four projects whose cost is an estimated $2,795,464.
“We are pleased with that funding,” says Big Lakes County Reeve Ken Matthews. “It indicates the lobbying with the government has helped us out.”
Matthews notes that the county had applied for funding for seven projects. Grants provide 75 per cent of funding, while the county contributes the rest. A bridge replacement at Strawberry Creek near Swan River at Hwy. 33 is the big one of the four projects receiving STIP funding; the provincial portion is $1.075 million, with the county’s share at $358,500. As for the culvert projects, one at Joussard receives a provincial grant of $367,847; the county kicks in $122,616.
Funding of $353,250 has been awarded for a culvert replacement on Township Rd. 742A, about three km. south of High Prairie at an estimated cost of $471,000, with $117,750 from the county. Finally, a culvert replacement at Salt Creek near Buffalo Bay gets $300,000 in STIP funding and $100,000 from the county. The provincial budget this year includes $100,000 million in STIP funding over three years, with more than $37 million approved for projects in 2017-18.


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