By Vanessa Broadbent
One year ago the Osoyoos Golf Club secured $300,000 of funds from the Town of Oliver and it’s looking to soon get the chance to use it.
The club is in need of a new irrigation system on its Parks Meadows course and is hoping that a provincial infrastructure grant will help cover the remaining costs.
The club helps the Town recycle its water by using 85 per cent of the treated wastewater to maintain its lagoon levels.
Now the club is again asking for Council’s assistance with funding, this time in the form of a loan.
“That now has become more of a front burner item for us; obviously delivery of water is a big issue for us,” president Herb Wycherley told Council at their meeting on Monday.
“The temperatures that we endure in the summer time, the last thing we could withstand is a catastrophic break so we’re trying to address the issue.”
The club is attempting to acquire funds through the province’s Community, Culture and Recreation Program.
However, if obtained the funds will only be reimbursed after the project’s completion, not in advance. The Club is required to demonstrate the ability to finance progress payments in its application, due Jan. 23.
“The funds will likely not be coming in swiftly. In theory we could have the project completed before we see the bulk of funds from the government,” Wycherley said.
With the upcoming deadline, obtaining financing from a financial institution would be difficult, Wycherly said.
“Essentially, we are requesting bridge financing from the Town should we be successful with our grant application.”
The entire project is estimated to cost $1.7 million and the grant would cover 66 per cent of the costs.
Chief Administrative Officer Barry Romanko told Council that staff would need to look at the Town’s ability to provide the funds, not only for the club but for other groups that have come forward requesting support in obtaining the same grant.
At their Dec. 3 meeting, Council agreed to provide the Osoyoos Museum Society with a letter of support in applying for $1.25 million from the same grant.
However, because the club would use the funding towards the Town’s water waste management system, funds could be used from sewer system reserve accounts, he said.
Councillor C.J. Rhodes pointed out that the club would also be required to cover associated costs in financing, should Council agree to supply the funds.
“It’s not that we can just go out and do this; there would be costs associated,” he said.
Council voted to direct Town staff to bring forward a report for bridge financing for all affected groups, not just the golf club.
The report will be presented at Council’s next meeting on Jan. 21.