It took city council a simple show of hands to take the next step in what will likely mean a sharing of municipal water services with South Glengarry.
Not one councillor spoke about the issue during Monday night’s meeting, and instead simply voted to accept a report from administrators which details how a portion of South Glengarry could connect itself to the city’s water and re-vamped sewer systems.
While it will still take some time before pipes are connected to the city system, Coun. Denis Carr said in an interview every indication is this partnership will become official.
“We’re moving forward,” he said. “There’s still a lot of numbers that will come out of that report.”
South Glengarry officials have suggested water costs for Cornwall residents would decrease and that South Glengarry’s payment for the water services would actually help to offset what the city has already spent in infrastructure.
The city has more than enough capacity to provide water service to part of South Glengarry, said city engineers.
South Glengarry officials met with city council at a special meeting weeks ago, where representatives from the largely rural township pitched an idea to councillors that would see Cornwall’s drinking water supply routed through a 250-metre area along Boundary Road.
South Glengarry would also like to see waste water treatment provided to its residents via the newly-revamped Cornwall facility currently being built – but that won’t happen until the upgrade is completed, a partnership which could ultimately take years.
South Glengarry wants to service Boundary Road between Tyotown Road and Highway 401. South Glengarry Mayor Ian McLeod has suggested an interest in expanding even further than that. The application asks Cornwall to provide 2,000 cubic meters of water per day.
Carr said this could be the start of more partnerships between Cornwall and its rural neighbours.
“There’s services we can both benefit from because we would be sharing costs,” he said, but stopped short of providing specifics.
Still, municipal services like garbage collection have been shared by other municipalities and Coun. Elaine MacDonald said the time is coming where taxpayers will demand greater efficiencies be found between municipalities.
“We have a lot to help each other with,” she said. “It’ll help us upgrade our facilities.”