Categorized | News

Biodigester a risk, but one worth taking, Mullins says

By Mike Williscraft
NewsNow

Setting ongoing concerns regarding Grimsby’s $4.5 million biodigester aside, Rob Hattin wants to know why council and hydro officials did not heed the Town’s legal counsel’s opinion.

Hattin, a former chair of Grimsby Energy, says serious concerns are evident in every facet of planning for the Sobie Road facility and insufficient due diligence throws gas on the fire.

“It makes no sense to ignore that advice,” said Hattin.

“It is a multi-million capital project with long-term financial implications for the Town’s largest asset and the Town itself. Why would you not turn every stone?”

Carolyn Mullins, chair of Grimsby’s Finance Committee, said she understands the concern, intensity of it and reasoning, but she believes council has already been down that road.

“I don’t disagree that there are risks with this project, but I believe this is project is sound,” said Mullins.

“I would not, and nobody else on council, put the Town in a precarious position.”

Hattin, who has expressed concerns with virtually every facet of the project – including operating budget, valuation of input material costs, payment plans and the Town’s financial guarantee as well as the facility’s energy producing efficiency – said the risks that are involved make it a non-starter.

In a Letter to the Editor this week, Hattin cited the Town’s track record in managing past major capital projects calling their performance, “underwhelming”.

“So why would this be any different,” he said in an interview.

Which brought Hattin back to his point about the independent review.

“We had a third party review it. We got legal advice. Our lawyer reviewed it,” said Mullins.

“He provided us with a letter outlining our liabilities and financial obligations. We’ve done everything we need to do.”

While there has been no full public disclosure of many key points in the business plan, Hattin said there is more than enough that is known which should be setting off the community’s alarms.

An example of that is a clause in the $4.5 million guarantee which town council has already approved.

“There is a clause there that Town assume immediate responsibility for the whole entity if Grimsby Energy defaults on just one payment,” noted Hattin.

“That is very unusual. Typically, it would go to a parent company which has assets and other means with which to deal with the debt as opposed to it being handed right over to the Town, as in this case.”

“You’re right,” agreed Mullins, when asked, “That is odd.”

“But we own both, so in a roundabout way we are ultimately responsible.”

“The project is getting a lot of attention and it should. It is good that people are stepping up. It will help ensure all concerns are addressed.”

About newsnow

newsnow is published Thursday each week, going to every home in West Niagara and the Winona area. Click here to contact newsnow.
West Niagara Weather
20°
broken clouds
humidity: 93%
wind: 3m/s E
H 24 • L 20
23°
Fri
22°
Sat
23°
Sun
25°
Mon
26°
Tue

Upcoming Community Events

  • Thu
    13
    Jul
    2017
    Fri
    18
    Aug
    2017

     Fun Fridays

    Beamsville Library, 4996 Beam Street, Beamsville
  • Thu
    13
    Jul
    2017
    Sun
    20
    Aug
    2017

    Speaker Series

    Beamsville Library, 4996 Beam Street, Beamsville
  • Tue
    18
    Jul
    2017
    Tue
    29
    Aug
    2017

    Yoga at Sunset

    Beamsville Library, 4996 Beam Street, Beamsville
  • Tue
    01
    Aug
    2017
    Thu
    31
    Aug
    2017

    West Lincoln Community Care – Summer Sizzler Sale

    135 Griffin Street, Smithville
For all Community Events, click here

July/August ClubWest now available online

Seeking Employment?

Total jobs: 371
CARQUEST CANADA LTD.
  |  Hamilton, Ontario
 - 17 Aug 2017

CARQUEST endeavors to make its recruitment process accessible to any and all users. Reasonable accommodations will be provided, upon request, to applicants with disabilities in ord...

CARQUEST CANADA LTD.
  |  Hamilton, Ontario
 - 17 Aug 2017

CARQUEST endeavors to make its recruitment process accessible to any and all users. Reasonable accommodations will be provided, upon request, to applicants with disabilities in ord...

SHOPPERS DRUG MART
  |  Lincoln, Ontario
 - 17 Aug 2017

Job Id. 1084830. Location. 5005 SERENA DRIVE. Store Number. 1256 SDM. Position Type. Part Time. JOB DESCRIPTION. Key responsibilities of a Shoppers Drug Mart Pharmacy Assistant in...

neuvoo job search jobs

Our Facebook Page

Subscribe to our newsnow posts

Enter your email address to subscribe here and receive notifications of new posts by email.

newsnow

100% Niagara owned and operated.
49 Main Street West
Grimsby, Ontario
L3M 1R3
289 235 9500
SiteLock