Town council should investigate 38 Street errors

I have written before that 38th Street residents were charged $4,100 for seven gas line crossings that did not occur.

Dear Editor:

I have written before that 38th Street residents were charged $4,100 for seven gas line crossings that did not occur. The question I ask is: How does an engineer, the contractor and the town officials responsible install a sanitary sewer main with private sewer and water connections to both sides of the street without knowing where the gas line is?

The fact town officials, despite repeated requests, concealed this information for almost four years, continue to ignore the matter since it was uncovered in June of last year and especially that it is only $4,100 out of a possible $200,000 makes this a very important matter, deserving the immediate attention of the Ponoka town council.

If it was just an “error’ as the town claims, why would they not immediately correct their error with an apology? If it was deliberate, could it be fraud? And, why is town council not extremely anxious to determine if it was just an error or if it was fraud?

How could it be just an error?

a) When designing this sanitary sewer line, wouldn’t an engineer determine where the gas lines are located? If he did locate the gas lines, he would have known there were no gas line crossings for these private service connections. If he did not locate the gas lines, how would he know there was a gas line to cross to specify these crossings?

In fact, both the pre-design and as-built plans obtained last June show this gas line on their plan. The pre-design plan shows a distorted location of the gas line indicating someone wanted to at least give the impression that there was a gas line crossing. The as-built plan shows the gas line well back of the property line, conforming with the gas company’s plan.

Why are there two different locations of this gas line? And. who changed the location on this plan? And why?

b) How could an engineer certify complete, in the progress payment certificates, seven gas line crossings when these crossings did not occur? And, why were they certified complete?

c) Why would an Engineer certify seven private connections in this item when there were only six private connections involved? And, of the six only three were part of the local improvement. The other three were extra connections requested by some individuals.

This $4,100 item is just one of many discrepancies we have brought to town council’s attention. At our meeting at the Ponoka County Office May I at 7 p.m., we will try to examine the documentation and information we have obtained and give anyone interested an opportunity to see the documentation for themselves.

Nick Kohlman

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