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Councillor vows city will fill gap for Grightmire funds

By Craig Campbell, Dundas Star News

If the federal government isn’t stepping in with $1-million in requested infrastructure funding, the J.L.Grightmire Arena renovation project will move ahead with additional municipal money, according to Dundas councillor Russ Powers.

Although a preliminary, informal response from the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund to city staff suggested just two of 18 prioritized Hamilton projects – Ancaster and Sackville senior centre renovations – would be funded, Powers is still thinking positive.

“Until the Feds say ‘No’, I’ll be hoping,” Powers said. “If there is a ‘No’, then the city will fund the entire $2.1-million to ensure it proceeds.”

The Dundas Hockeyville Legacy Committee has committeed to contribute $600,000 to the project, while the city was originally set to offer a $1.1-million share.

“We continue to pursue funding from multiple sources for both the Legacy Room and the renewal of the balance,” Powers said.

The CIIF has not publicly announced any funding decisions, but issued a statement to the Dundas Star News on Thursday, Dec. 6 saying “projects are now approved under the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund and applicants will be informed of the results very shortly. A public announcement will be made in early 2013 and the full project list will be available on the Agency’s website at that time.”

An information report to city councillors from Rob Rossini, general manager of finance and corporate services, stated city staff were notified by FedDev Ontario staff on Wednesday, Dec. 5 that the Ancaster and Sackville projects had been approved for support. Those projects were ranked by city staff as the number one and number 11 priorities of the 18 projects submitted for CIIF funding.

The Grightmire Arena project was ranked third on the list.

The information report to councillors noted: “Staff at FedDev Ontario have been silent on the remainder of the projects submitted, and at this time there has been no indication of whether or not any future funding announcements are expected.”

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