By Treena Mielke
Ponoka County and the Town of Rimbey have banded together to help Rimoka Housing Foundation make its dream of a new seniors citizens housing complex in Rimbey become a reality.
At its meeting Sept. 29, county council gave the go-ahead on a motion by Coun. Keith Beebe to purchase 8.5 acres of land in Johnson’s Estates northwest of the Rimbey Community Centre from Alvin Johnson et al. The title of the land will remain in the county’s name until approval for the housing project is obtained from the province.
The town, at its meeting Sept. 26, agreed to pick up the cost of installing the water and the sewer lines from the nearest main to that land at an estimated cost of $170.000.
Mayor Sheldon Ibbotson is encouraged by the partnership with the town, the county and Rimoka.
“I believe this greatly increase the chances of having a new seniors’ facility in Rimbey.”
“We all have the same goal. We’re all on board and moving in the same direction.”
Coun. Joe Anglin, who is also chairman of Rimoka, said the plan fits in well with the policies of the ministry of housing.
“As the board chair I am extremely proud and happy that the county has agreed to this partnership and extremely pleased that the Town of Rimbey has participated in the partnership. It shows a commitment on the part of the county and the communities involved.”
Anglin said the province wants to see more partnerships such as this.
“I met with the minister and we discussed just these types of partnerships. He was extremely pleased to see it.”
Anglin said Rimoka’s application for funding for an aging in place centre for Rimbey, which he estimates will cost in the neighborhood of $17 million, has been put on hold.
“Slave Lake suffered a major disaster and it set everything back,” he said.
However, Anglin is confident the province will consider the application.
“We know we have a viable project.” County Coun. Gawney Hinkley agreed.
“I do believe that money will come.”