Brockton is the only municipality in all of Bruce Grey that does not own its own municipal office, and this is not likely to change anytime soon.
A motion to direct staff to research and bring forward a report comparing the costs of the current municipal office location with the potential cost of building a new municipal office facility to be located in the East Ridge Business Park has been defeated.
Councillor James Lang who supported the motion believes it is in the public’s interest to know the difference between the cost of leasing the current municipal office and the cost of owning.
Lang says Brockton has been leasing office space in the old Canada Post building since 1994 at a current cost of over 70 thousand dollars a year.
Due to lack of space Brockton also rents out the Bruce County Council Chambers at the Bruce County Administration building to hold its Council meetings.
Lang says he felt it was in the ratepayer’s best interest to compare the cost of owning a facility verses continuing to lease a facility over the long term.
Deputy Mayor Dan Gieruszak however believes the timing for the motion is all wrong.
He says 2020 is incredibly busy for staff especially with the upcoming 20th Anniversary of the Walkerton Water Crisis and the Bruce Power Block Party.
Gieruszak doesn’t believe a ‘simple’ report would be enough to tackle a report of this magnitude that he says would need to be very detailed with up-to-date cost figures.
Gieruszak believes investigating the price of a 13 to 14 thousand square foot municipal build project would be better done at a time when Council was in an actual position to give the matter serious consideration.
Over the years the topic of building a new municipal office has been a contentious and controversial one in Brockton.
Lang says he understands where his fellow Councillors are coming from concerning the timing.
However, he believes a simple report would have been sufficient to provide a picture of just what Brockton is spending each year to lease compared to what a new build project would cost.
Lang says while the motion was defeated this time around, he believes the issue needs to be revisited in the future. (James Lang and Councillor Kym Hutcheon were the only two Councillors who voted in favour of motion.)