Only $25,000 of a $600,000 community compensation fund for the Carp Road Landfill has gone to Stittsville.
Councillor Shad Qadri provided StittsvilleCentral.ca with data that shows how much community compensation Waste Management paid for the operation of the Carp Road Landfill.
The landfill operated from 2001 to 2011, but Waste Management continues to contribute to the “Community Initiative Fund” as part of an agreement signed in 2001 between the company and the City of Ottawa. The fund has received $613,673 so far from Waste Management.
Of that total, so far $450,000 has been dedicated to nine community projects in Kanata North, Kanata South, West Carleton and Stittsville. (See map below.) There’s a remaining balance in the fund of $163,673 still waiting to be used.
Only one of those projects was in Stittsville: a $25,000 grant in 2014 to establish a stewardship fund for Kemp Woodland near Sacred Heart High School. Although the landfill is located in West Carleton, Stittsville is the closest community.
|2002||Kanata South||Western Ottawa Community Resource Centre(1)||$50,000|
|2009||Kanata South||Bridlewood Splash Pad (Bluegrass Park)||$40,000|
|2011||Kanata North||Richcraft Recreation Complex Skateboard Park||$80,000|
|2010||Kanata South||Katimavik Pool Gazebo Shelter||$40,000|
|2014||Stittsville||Kemp Woodland Stewardship||$25,000|
|2005||West Carleton||West Carleton Arena Fund(2)||$100,000|
|2006||West Carleton||Carp Splash Pad||$20,000|
|2007||West Carleton||Buy the Village Green(3)||$60,000|
|2014||West Carleton||Constance and Buckham’s Bay Project Sandhills(4)||$35,000|
|Total amount funded||$450,000|
|Amount remaining in the fund||$163,673|
|1. The funding is believed to have been used for landscaping work when the centre was constructed.
2. The money helped fund the construction of what’s now known as the Cavanagh Sensplex, a public-private partnership between the City and the Ottawa Senators.
3. A community fundraising project aimed at purchasing a parcel of land in Carp to preserve as a public space.
4. A community centre project, part of a joint venture between the city’s Parks & Recreation department, the Ottawa Public Libary, and the community.
“There’s been no really local advantage to the community. I think that has to be addressed going forward,” said Harold Moore, who lives in West Carleton close to the landfill. He’s a part COLA (Coalition for Landfill Accountability), an umbrella group of local community associations, including several in Stittsville.
Waste Management and the City of Ottawa are currently negotiating a new Host Community Agreement (also known as a Host Municipality Responsibility Agreement) for the operation of the expanded landfill. Community compensation is expected to be included in the new agreement.
“We’re the ones who are impacted the greatest by the landfill. People who are now taking advantage of a nice splash pad in Bridlewood, they can’t see [the landfill] from there, they can’t smell it from there, they don’t have impact from the traffic and they don’t see really any of the negative impacts from the landfill. That’s really what the compensation fund is for, to compensate for the negative impacts of having a landfill close by,” said Moore.
Moore said that he has been trying to find out how much money was in this fund, and what is was used for, for years.
“It’s a totally secret process as far as the community is concerned. I’ve been working on this for 10 years almost, and this is the first time I’ve heard this level of detail of information on it,” said Moore.
“If it’s a community compensation fund, I think the community should have more knowledge about it and more say about how it’s spent. I know the councillors are supposed to represent the community but I think they should have some kind of communication with the community, let them know the money is there and ask what types of projects the community would like to see it spent on,” said Moore.
Stittsville councillor Shad Qadri and the three other west-end councillors are able to use the money in the community initiative fund for projects.
“I’m sure most of the councillors do consult with their community before they put a project forward,” said Qadri.
“Because the money is put in by Waste Management, and it is under their control, they do have a good say in terms if the project goes or does not go. Most of the projects I’m aware of have not been rejected by Waste Management. They go through,” said Qadri.
Qadri said the Kemp Woodland preservation project in Stittsville was one of his initiatives. He says there is money left for use in Stittsville, and he’d like it used for a future splash pad in the community.
“I will be selecting a site from my recent park survey and will also work with City staff on the site selection,” he said.
Moore says that the compensation the community received for the old Carp landfill was low compared to other places in Ontario.
Representatives from Waste Management could not be reached for comment on this story.
COMMUNITY COMPENSATION AT A GLANCE
As part of the terms of a 2001 Host Community Agreement (HCA) between Waste Management and the City of Ottawa, Waste Management pays into two streams of community funding:
- The first is the Community Initiative Fund explained above, “to be used to support environmental initiatives and local projects located primarily in the wards of West Carleton, Goulbourn and Kanata,” according to the agreement.bThe amount contributed to the fund is “equal to the product obtained when the number 1 million is multiplied by the interest rate for bonds issued by the Government of Canada with a thirty-year maturity”. So if the relevant interest rate is 2%, then $20,000 gets contributed into the fund. $613,673 has accumulated since 2001, of which $163,673 remains. The HCA says that the funding will be “jointly determined by the City and CWS, each acting reasonably.” Under the agreement, the City and Waste Management are identified as co-sponsors of any initiative that gets funded.
- Waste Management pays a separate “host community fee”, essentially a tax or levy of $1 per metric tonne of waste disposed at the landfill. The City received a total of $1,987,685 from Waste Management between 2001 to 2011 through this levy. The city says this fund is used for “various landfill and/or recycling/diversion initiatives”.