Sooke anxiously awaiting word on grant funding

$7.7 million on table from provincial and federal governments

The District of Sooke is anxiously awaiting a decision on more than $7.7-million in federal and provincial infrastructure grants before it can move ahead on three major projects.

The projects include the Otter Point Active Transportation Corridor worth $2.1 million, sewer expansion at $6.9 million and the $1.5-million DeMamiel Creek pedestrian crossing bridge.

RELATED: DeMamiel Creek pedestrian crossing opens

The municipality and senior government will share the project costs.

Grants expected are $1.8 million for the transportation corridor, $4.6 million slated for sewer expansion and $1.3 million for DeMamiel Creek.

“We put together very strong and well-thought-out applications for these projects,” Mayor Maja Tait said. “But when I hear the patter of a pending federal election, it makes me nervous because it will blackout those applications.”

Like most municipalities, the Sooke council signed off its budget for the next year without knowing whether any of its senior government capital works funding would be successful.

Two infrastructure projects were already denied this year by the B.C. and federal governments– the Bluff staircase replacement and Sooke Potholes access development.

Tait said the remaining three projects are important for the Sooke transportation network and necessary to complete the projects.

“The answer I want is either we get the grant, which is great. If we don’t, then we have to look at what is plan B,” Tait said, adding local taxpayers would most likely foot the bill.

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