Nanton Town Council approved a borrowing bylaw for 1.25 million dollars at their most recent meeting to make improvements on their town water.

An investigation into complaints of bad odours and colours found the water reservoir was 60 percent full of sludge, which is a result of drawing drinking water from Mosquito Creek.

Mayor Jennifer Handley says the reservoir hasn't been cleaned out once in 35 years of operation so it is very overdue.

"When we talked to Alberta Environment in November they said on average raw water reservoirs are dredged every five to six years as a preventative maintenance program," said Handley. " So for us to be doing this for the first time in 35 years it is a significant project."

She adds the frustrating part is there is no provincial money for maintenance.

"If we were to be building a brand new raw water reservoir at the cost of three to four million dollars there may be some grants available.

We all know that in Alberta's economy grants are hard to come by."

The Town had several engineers investigating just what was happening with the drinking water and they all agreed that dredging the reservoir was the best solution to the taste, odour and colour problems residents were complaining about.

And the Town has taken one further step by adding a new staff member.

"We have also hired a water and waste water foreman who started on January first and he is really, really putting in strong systems for our teams."

Handley says they budgeted 1.25 million for the project but they are not anticipating it will cost that much. If there is a remaining amount there are a couple of other projects in the water plant that the money could go to.

The term of the borrowing proposed is 25 years as this will have the least amount of impact on the budget.


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