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RM nixes CP railroading

By Brian Oliver, The Graphic

Rm of Portage CAO Nettie Neudorf, Reeve Kam Blight, and Ward four councilor Roy Tufford at Tuesday's council meeting. (Aaron Wilgosh/The Graphic)

Rm of Portage CAO Nettie Neudorf, Reeve Kam Blight, and Ward four councilor Roy Tufford at Tuesday's council meeting. (Aaron Wilgosh/The Graphic)

You never know if you don't ask.

Unfortunately for CP, it was a resounding no from the Rural Municipality of Portage's council Tuesday morning at the RM council meeting.

CP was handing the RM a quarter-million dollar tab for track improvements at CP Rail crossing 60-86 and Road 41, near Simplot.

"We're not exactly certain where they're coming from on this but right now the RM is not prepared to pay $225,000 worth of repair costs on CP infrastructure," says RM Reeve Kam Blight. "We have enough costs we have to take care of with our own infrastructure never mind trying to maintain someone else's."

The crossing in question is on Road 41 between Enns Brothers and Simplot. The RM has been working to widen the road to prepare it for the insurgence of tractor trailers with the expansion of the potato producers and opening of Roquette. 

"We would have liked a little more clarity on exactly why this request is coming forward and why they're expecting the RM of Portage la Prairie to foot a $225,000 repair maintenance bill on their infrastructure," added Blight. "We feel it's very passable. We're not certain where these huge repair costs are coming from."

After much discussion among councillors, and the suggestion of perhaps covering 12.5 per cent not unlike cost-sharing scenarios seen in similar situations, councillors opted to instruct administration to inform the rail company that the RM will not be covering any of the costs at this time.

"At this point, if they want to come forward and explain to us why they feel these upgrades need to take place than maybe that will change council's mind some what," the Reeve stated.  


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