A proposed auxiliary fire hall would be centrally located within the Greater Merville area. File photo

A proposed auxiliary fire hall would be centrally located within the Greater Merville area. File photo

Proposed Merville fire hall takes another step

On Nov. 5, the Comox Valley Regional District began an Alternative Approval Process (AAP) for a loan authorization bylaw to help finance the construction and equipping of a new Greater Merville Fire Protection Service fire hall.

The development of an auxiliary fire hall, centrally located within the Greater Merville area, has been identified as a key initiative since 2016 to provide several benefits to the local community, including improved life-safety services for residents and potential reductions in fire insurance premiums for insured residences.

The AAP process ended Monday, Dec. 7. At the close of the process, eight eligible elector response forms were received. The board may now consider the bylaw for adoption at their Dec. 15 meeting.

In order for the CVRD to proceed with the final adoption of the bylaw, less than 10 per cent of electors in the service area would have had to submit a response form. The total number of electors for this AAP was 2,733. Therefore, the CVRD would have had to receive 273 forms to prevent the board from adopting Bylaw No. 614 without going to referendum.

“Following adoption of the loan authorization bylaw, staff will begin the tendering processes to select the construction contractor as well as the fire service equipment suppliers,” said James Bast, manager of fire services. “It is anticipated that fire hall construction will continue through the summer of 2021.”

The total estimated cost for the project is estimated at $2,129,430, to be funded through a combination of capital reserves and a maximum of $2 million of borrowing. No tax increase is projected as part of the borrowing plan due to transitioning reserve contributions to debt repayment.

To learn more about the project, visit www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/mervillefire