From a new theatre to the regional waterline project and everything in between. Bonnyville town council fielded questions and opinions in the 2019 budget town hall open house on December 4th. Council presented the crowd with their second draft of the 2019 capital and operating budgets. Both will require some trimming to get to Mayor Gene Sobolewski’s goal of a zero-tax dollar increase.

Included in the budget is the plan of a study into a new performing arts theatre in the community. Pressed for details and a timeframe, Mayor Sobolewski says everything is up in the air.

“I unequivocally state, we are not going to be making any decisions in that regard until after it gets vetted through the public process and things like that. Then everybody gets a say in it.”

Council was able to update the status of bringing water from Cold Lake to the area. The construction on the booster for the line has begun but hangups on a land reclamation plan with Alberta Environment means no pipe has been laid. Town CAO Mark Power says he figures shovels will get in the ground in 2019.

“We are waiting. My guess is we’ve lost the window to start. The contractor will probably not hold his men over the Christmas period so we’ll probably start in the new year.”

Other concerns were raised include speeding cars on Lakeshore Drive and the status of walking trails around Jessie Lake. Council will be passing a tentative 2019 budget at their next meeting on December 11th.