Peas still on the ta­ble

City ad­min­is­tra­tion mum on al­tered deal be­fore coun­cil ap­proval

Moose Jaw Times Herald - - FRONT PAGE - JOSHUA SAN­TOS

Cana­dian Pro­tein In­no­va­tion (CPI) Ltd. has de­vel­oped a new agree­ment with the city of Moose Jaw for its $100-mil­lion plant. “I don’t have author­ity to ac­cept changes com­pared to what we showed coun­cil. This has to go back to coun­cil some­time next week,” said Matt No­ble, city man­ager. A pea-pro­cess­ing plant was set to be­gin con­struc­tion this year in two phases. The first phase will cost ap­prox­i­mately $60 mil­lion and em­ploy 60 peo­ple. The sec­ond phase will cost ap­prox­i­mately $40 mil­lion and em­ploy an­other 40 peo­ple.

We are aware and we have ev­i­dence that they ini­ti­ated the wire trans­fer for some of the pur­chase of the prop­erty. Matt No­ble, City Man­ager

Ac­cord­ing to No­ble, the new 50page doc­u­ment out­lines 18 clauses, one of which is set to af­fect sched­ul­ing. No­ble said he can­not com­ment on the spe­cific changes CPI has re­quested be­fore coun­cil ap­proves them.

“I can tell you that pay­ments are af­fect­ing sched­ules and penal­ties. That’s all. We’re way fur­ther ahead than we were last week,” he said. “It’s a com­plex agree­ment that we have be­cause we’re pro­vid­ing ser­vices and we’re es­tab­lish­ing mile­stones for them to achieve over the course of their pro­ject.”

The city will is­sue a build­ing per­mit and ex­pects a cer­tain per­cent­age of work to be done be­fore an ex­pected com­ple­tion date. The new pro­vi­sions came amidst a Nov.-30 dead­line for CPI to pur­chase the land in the new in­dus­trial area, cov­er­ing 100 acres.

De­spite nu­mer­ous ex­ten­sions and de­lays send­ing money, the Ger­man com­pany is still in­ter­ested in build­ing the plant and has be­gun to trans­fer the money.

“We are aware and we have ev­i­dence that they ini­ti­ated the wire trans­fer for some of the pur­chase of the prop­erty,” said No­ble.

He said it is an in­tri­cate pro­ject that requires equip­ment from other places in the world, which has caused the hold up.

“There’s po­ten­tial for some de­lays and they want to be sure of cer­tain things be­fore they com­mit,” he said.

Deal­ing with a for­eign Ger­man com­pany has also been an is­sue for the city.

“I’m afraid dis­tance, com­mu­ni­ca­tion issues and busi­ness cul­tural dif­fer­ences have re­sulted in these types of de­lays. It is a fairly com­plex agree­ment,” No­ble said.

CPI plans to process yel­low peas into starch, pro­tein and fi­bre. It will be used for prod­ucts like noo­dles, candy, pasta, an­i­mal pro­tein re­place­ments and in­dus­trial uses. The com­pany was granted a third ex­ten­sion to close the deal Nov. 30 after rep­re­sen­ta­tives vis­ited city hall on Sept. 28 and said fi­nan­cial con­straints would hold them back from sign­ing off yet again.

The rep­re­sen­ta­tives also dis­closed a re­quest to not com­ply with the city’s sewer and util­ity by­law No. 5152 un­til July 31, 2022. The by­law pro­vides a guide­line for the sup­ply, col­lec­tion, treat­ment, stor­age and dis­tri­bu­tion of wa­ter and for the col­lec­tion, trans­mis­sion, treat­ment and dis­posal of sewage and storm drainage. Coun­cil granted the author­ity to op­er­ate out­side the by­law for two years fol­low­ing pro­duc­tion as city la­goons have the ca­pac­ity to store CPI’s waste­water.

CPI will pre-treat their waste­water after two years to en­sure it could safely be dis­charged in the city’s waste­water treat­ment sys­tem.

The com­pany pre­vi­ously said it would not be in op­er­a­tion un­til Dec. 31, 2020, after a fur­ther re­view of their busi­ness plan. It needs to be up and run­ning at 100 per cent to de­ter­mine if evap­o­ra­tors are needed to elim­i­nate odour issues caused by pro­duc­tion. It will take 18 months to or­der, man­u­fac­ture and in­stall the evap­o­ra­tors. That is why CPI does not want to ad­here to the city’s util­ity by law.

CPI was pre­vi­ously granted a sec­ond ex­ten­sion to close the deal on Oct. 3, but a con­fi­den­tial is­sue held the com­pany back.

The first clos­ing date was meant to be June 30, but CPI did not have fi­nanc­ing in place, and re­quested an ex­ten­sion to Aug. 31. Con­struc­tion was to be­gin in sum­mer 2017.

Not much is know about the com­pany, other than it does not have website and it was the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment that lured the Ger­man cor­po­ra­tion to Moose Jaw, ac­cord­ing to me­dia re­ports.

The Times-Her­ald reached out to CPI but they did not re­spond by press time.

I’m afraid dis­tance, com­mu­ni­ca­tion issues and busi­ness cul­tural dif­fer­ences have re­sulted in these types of de­lays. It is a fairly com­plex agree­ment. Matt No­ble, city man­ager

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.