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Ontario Tragedy Leads to Local Action
(August 17/2001)-- The tainted water supply tragedy in Walkerton, Ontario, helped to move a request for upgraded services by a local homeowner group from "the wish list to the priority list", Councillor Gary Hines said today.
The District 2 (Waverley-Dutch Settlement) Councillor said the Walkerton situation, which claimed the lives of seven people and left hundreds of other ill with E.coli bacteria poisoning in May 2000, led to priority status for a request for upgraded treatment facilities by the Miller Lake Subdivision Homeowner's Association.
Councillor Hines said the project would not have been added to the Halifax Regional Municipality's Canada-Nova Scotia Infrastructure Project list if it were not for the support he received from his Council colleagues, and the tremendous cooperation and support of the homeowner's group.
" Halifax Regional Council, staff and the members of the association, led by Norman Lavoie, worked hard to convince the Federal and Nova Scotia governments that this project was badly needed. Local MLA, the Honourable Peter Christie, also worked with us to make this water supply upgrade become a reality, " he said.
The $200,000 project will upgrade the subdivision's water distribution system and install a new water treatment system. It will provide 44 households in the subdivision with a higher quality, potable water-therefore, reducing health risks and increasing community safety.
Councillor Hines said the broad media attention given to the Walkerton situation during the past two years underscored the need "to ensure the Miller Lake Subdivision system was upgraded as quickly as possible, using the very latest in infrastructure technology.
"Walkerton made us very aware of just how quickly this situation can happen. We wanted to be pro-active and I am pleased that the other levels of government agreed with our position. It's always better to be safe, than sorry, " he said.
Councillor Gary Hines