Deputy Mayor Supports Federal Money For Donkin Rail Connection
The CBRM’s Deputy Mayor says he’d like to see federal funding for rail infrastructure to support the proposed coal mining operation in Donkin. District 8 Councillor Kevin Saccary notes that Ottawa recently set aside money from the Building Canada Fund to support the expansion of Edmonton’s light rail transit system. If the Donkin project gets off the ground, Saccary says that it, too, could benefit from federal infrastructure dollars. The recently announced federal investment in Edmonton’s LRT system amounted to $150 million dollars, compared to the $90 million that Saccary says would be necessary to connect Donkin to Victoria Junction by rail. A rail option for transporting Donkin coal has long been supported by local fishermen and other stakeholders, who worry that the barging of coal would pose a hazard to the fishery. The project’s owner, Glencore-Xstrata, says the barging option is cheaper, though the company is currently trying to sell its 75% share in the project. Saccary says he hopes to speak to Federal Transport Minister Lisa Raitt on the possibility of rail investments to support the Donkin mine. He’s also hoping that Regional Council will have an opportunity to consult with the Sydney native when she next visits the island.