By Nancy Kelly
While they are happy the town of Annapolis Royal wants to become a partner in the Valley Waste network, Berwick councillors are concerned the town’s buy-in is too low.
The Valley Waste-Resource Management authority is comprised of representatives from the Municipality of Annapolis County, Kings County council and the towns of Berwick, Bridgetown, Hantsport, Kentville, Middleton and Wolfville. The authority meets on a monthly basis to discuss issues and provide direction to staff, which manages the business of the authority.
Annapolis Royal, which chose not to join the collective when it was established, has decided it now wants in and the partners have been asked by the authority to approve Annapolis Royal as a new partner. The fee under consideration, determined by an external interest and without consultation with the current partners, was considered too low by Berwick.
“Annapolis Royal could have joined when we all did,” Coun. John Prall said, and questioned whether or not there was a specific formula to determine a buy-in. He agreed with Finance Director Greg Towne’s assertion that what Berwick and the other partners “spent to promote and develop the authority over the years should be factored into the cost of joining the partnership.”
Towne added that he believes the company is under-valuing itself.
“The process needs to be fair to those who put equity into Valley Waste,” he said.
Kings County, which has veto power over any financial decisions, has yet to weigh in on the matter.
Berwick council did not approve the request and deferred the issue for a month with the intention of sharing their concerns with other members of the waste management board.