Council approves purchases for Sackville Fire & Rescue equipment
Following are four noteworthy takeaways from Sackville Town Council’s September meetings:
n1. Upgrade required for water meter reading equipment
The town’s water meter reading equipment will soon be getting an upgrade.
At its Sept. 10 meeting, council approved the upgrade to the town’s vehicle reading unit and handheld units that allows staff to read water meters, through radio frequency, while driving by.
Treasurer Michael Beal explained the upgrade is necessary since the radio-read devices used currently by the town are no longer in production and will all eventually need to be replaced.
Although the town’s equipment will still be able to read the existing radio, read devices that are in play until they are replaced with the newer and more powerful “smartpoints,” Beal said the reading units do require this latest add-on.
Beal also noted the company, Census Scotia Tech, agreed to include 25 free smartpoints and 25 free meters into the package deal, which comes with a $29,500 price tag. He said that is about 40 per cent savings off of the cost of purchasing those items down the road.
Beal said the changeover to the ‘smartpoint’ devices on all 2,000 meters will be done in a phased approach and will likely take about 20 years.
“We’re not in a positon to change out all of the reading devices that are currently attached to the meters. That would be a cost in the range of $400,000.”
n2. Lots of interest in vacant bylaw officer position
More than 80 applications have been received for the town’s bylaw enforcement officer position.
The position became vacant in July when former bylaw officer Brian Bell, who had been at town hall for three years, stepped down after accepting a job elsewhere.
A total of 82 applicants had sent in their resumes by the Aug. 24 closing date. The applications are now being reviewed in preparation for narrowing them down to a short list for interviews.
In the meantime, the town has hired Brooke Wilson on a shortterm contract basis to fill the gap until someone new is hired.
n3. Exit 506 area next in line for provincial road funding
The town of Sackville has handed over its ‘wish list’ to the provincial government for roadwork it would like to see completed over the next five years. And the priorities have shifted a bit from the previous five-year plan.
Council has amended the list to put Exit 506 at the top, ahead of the other projects, to try and get work done along the section of Cattail Ridge and Bridge Street. Town engineer Dwayne Acton said work in the Exit 506 area, which was recommended as part of a study earlier this year, could include upgrades to the Bridge Street/cattail Ridge intersection, sidewalks, curb and gutter, and bike lanes.
Coun. Andrew Black said he agreed wholeheartedly with switching around the projects in order to put this one at the top.
“My hope is that if we get some curb and gutter and some nice sidewalks in there, it will sort of entice people to want to develop that area, which it definitely needs.”
The proposed five-year wish list, which sets out what work the municipality would like to see done on provincially designated highways, is sent every year to the New Brunswick Department of Transportation and Infrastructure.
The next proposed project on the list would be road reconstruction of a 300-metre section of Queens Road, from Main Street to Hillcrest.
That would be followed up in 2021 by paving of Route 106, from the Route 935 intersection to the section known as Carter’s turn. This was the project originally proposed for 2019.
In 2022, the proposed work would consist of road reconstruction of a 280-metre section of Queens Road, from Hillcrest Street to Fairfield Road.
The 2023 project would consist of the final phase of the asphalt resurfacing of Route 106, from Carter’s turn to the town limits.
These projects will all depend on availability of funds and approval at the provincial level.
n4. New fire gear on its way Sackville’s fire department will be updating some of its gear in 2018.
Town council approved several purchases for Sackville Fire & Rescue during its monthly meeting Sept. 10, which includes 11 new self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBAS), 27 4,500 psi carbon-wrapped cylinders, and two spare harnesses for the SCBAS.
Fire chief Craig Bowser said this purchase is part of a phased approach to upgrade all of the department’s SCBAS to meet new provincial standards.
“This is the second part of the phase. We do have one again next year as part of the plan, and that will complete the upgrades to our self-contained breathing apparatus,” said Bowser.
The items come with a total price tag of about $130,000 from Micmac Fire and Safety Source of Fredericton, slightly under what was budgeted for the equipment.
Meanwhile, council also approved 20 sets of the department’s outdated bunker gear to be declared as surplus and authorized them to be donated to Dominican Missions Team Life Aid.