Sunday, December 4, 2011

Guest Post by George Smith

Open question to former council, new council, staff and anyone with specific knowledge.

For many, many years we have had a sewer system that relies on hydro to keep the pumps running. For as many years as we have had this sewer system we have had power outages. During these power outages we relied on village employees to keep the pumps running by moving generators on a trailers from pump to pump for the duration of the power outage. This resulted in sometimes significant overtime costs

Council/staff at some point decided generators that were stationary on site would be a great idea because they would reduce overtime costs. Now we have at least 3 diesel generators, and at least 2 propane units, maybe more that I have not discovered.

Was there ever an accurate costing done for these units? They require significant maintenance, rental of propane tanks and so on. Notwithstanding that, these units will have a finite life of 6-8 years before needing complete replacement.

I would like to hear if this was really a cost efficient way of reducing overtime. Maybe just to generate some discussion of projects which may have had little or no real accounting scrutiny before the spend.

What was the cost? The amortization? And what are the savings/advantages? Were they a good use of our money?

George Smith

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