Windsor council unlocks $6.4 million from previous enhanced capital budget
Windsor City Hall in Windsor, Ont., on Monday, Oct. 16, 2018. (Rich Garton / CTV Windsor)
At Windsor’s first meeting of 2019, council was asked to unlock about $6.4-million of placeholder funding from past budgets.
The previous council passed about $10-million of projects in the 2018 enhanced capital budget including road works, upgrades to parks and off-road cycling facilities.
But those funds were not accessible without this council's blessing.
Council voted Monday night to release those enhanced funds for 14 projects, in order to maximize this year's construction season.
Ward 9 Coun. Kieran McKenzie questioned whether future councils will be saddled with pre-commitments from previous councils.
“What we’re doing today, is the next council is going to have to essentially pay to fund the projects we’re approving today,” McKenzie asked administration during deliberations. “To what extent does that compromise or hamstring the ability of future councils to make capital investments in real-time when those moments come?”
But Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens says nothing is carved in stone until councils vote to unlock funding within a five-year window.
“It has no impact on future councils,” Dilkens said.
"In this coming budget, we're going to be in a seven-year budget, next year will be an eight year budget, up to a 10-year budget and you'll making notional allocations and you'll approve a capital budget for 10 years,” said Dilkens. “But I guarantee, by the time year 10 comes, you're going to start or the council of the day will start re-jigging what's in that budget to make sure they can meet the priorities of today as opposed to what was approved 10 years before."
Here is a list of projects council approved:
-$1,150,000 for the addition of curbs and sewers along California Avenue and Pulford Street in South Windsor
-$70,000 for new streetlights along Banwell Road between Tecumseh Road and Mulberry Drive.
-$300,000 for pedestrian-area design elements for La Belle Strada streetscaping on Erie Street.
-$1,380,000 for the reconstruction of Byng Road between Lappan and Melinda Roads.
-$430,000 for the reconstruction of Park Street West from Pelissier Street to Caron Avenue.
-$510,000 for the reconstruction of St. Luke Road between Seminole Road and the Essex Terminal Railway.
-$114,000 to resurface Albert Road from Wyandotte Street East to Edna Street.
-$440,000 to reconstruct eastbound lanes of Wyandotte Street East between St. Rose Avenue to Janisse Drive.
-$120,000 for the resurfacing of Courtland Crescent at South National Road.
-$90,000 to resurface Annie Street from Tecumseh Road to the cul-de-sac.
-$175,000 to install a perimeter walking path and lighting at Wigle Park.
-$460,000 to redevelop Stodgell Park by putting in an asphalt mutli-use trail with accessible parking and tree planting.
-$100,000 for the installation of wayfinding sineage and markers along the Little River Corridor extension of the Ganatchio Trail to improve orientation for users and emergency services.
-$500,000 to create off-road bicycle facilities in consultation with the community and stakeholders.
-$500,000 of ward funds will be split across the 10 wards in Windsor.
-$75,000 in financing charges.
The remaining $3.6 million of enhanced capital budget dollars was allocated to "districting," which encompasses unique districts planned across the city. Mayor Dilkens has said Walkerville will be the first target destination of these funds, and a future report to council will deal with the remainder of the 2018 enhanced budget dollars.