Skip to content

Weyburn to foot entire bill to move power line from landfill

The City of Weyburn will make an internal loan to cover up to $1.1 million in costs to move a SaskPower transmission line
City hall-flags-9838
The City of Weyburn will have to foot the entire bill to relocate a SaskPower transmission line out of the city's landfill.

WEYBURN – The City of Weyburn will make an internal loan to cover up to $1.1 million in costs to move a SaskPower transmission line from the city’s landfill.

Currently an overhead 72kV three-phase transmission line, including a 25kV under-build, runs through the landfill, and it is impeding the development of the City’s long-term plan to further develop the landfill, as well as posing a safety hazard with daily operations.

The City’s permit to operate the landfill expired on July 1, and the ministry of the Environment only renewed the permit for another 19 months with the condition that the city has to close its non-engineered operating face, and will begin operating in a new engineered cell before applying for a permit renewal.

The work that the ministry requires cannot be done until the power line is relocated out of the landfill.

The first estimated cost from SaskPower to relocate the line was $550,000, then after requesting a formal quote, the estimate was then $750,000, plus or minus 50 per cent.

As of early September, SaskPower provided an updated cost estimate based on the detailed design and subcontractor costs, and has now been pegged at $970,000 due to increased costs of materials, resources and subcontractor costs.

Asked if SaskPower was going cost-share this project at all, engineer Jennifer Wilkinson said they held negotiations with SaskPower to share the cost of the project, but the utility deemed this as a City request and they saw no need on their part to relocate the line.

“It’s very unfortunate,” said Mayor Marcel Roy, noting the city can’t build anything close to where the transmission line is, and equipment can’t operate where the lines are.

This will force the city to finance the line relocation themselves, and Wilkinson is asking for an internal loan of up to $550,000 to cover the cost up to $1.1 million. She noted with rising costs, this will give the City a little cushion in case the cost is more than the quoted amount of $970,000.

Part of the way the City will repay the loan internally is to use revenue from the landfill, such as from disposal fees. The report to council noted that as of Aug. 31, disposal fees had already exceeded the budgeted income by $24,788. The refuse bylaw is being reviewed currently as well with the aim to increase environmental and disposal fees starting in 2023, which will increase revenues for the next three years.

• In other council business, council approved a discretionary use permit for the Weyburn Co-operative Playschool to locate in the basement of Grace United Church.

Only one concern was sent in to City Hall, about the parking in the area of the United Church, but in her report, development officer Janine Fletcher noted they have a parking lot to the rear of the church off Fourth Street.

This would be deemed a discretionary use of the church building, but considered compatible with the Official Community Plan as it promotes a more efficient use of the building.

The permit was approved subject to conditions of getting a building permit for the renovations, and getting inspections by the Fire Department and Public Health, and they must comply with any provincial regulations for child care regulations.