Taxpayers won’t finance winery’s power upgrade | News

With the district facing a cash crunch of its own as a result of COVID-19, Summerland council on Monday rejected a local winery’s proposal to have taxpayers finance the cost of upgrades to its electrical service.

The owners of Dirty Laundry Vineyard were seeking the power upgrade ahead of planned improvements to its equipment. The district, which runs its own power utility, estimated the cost of the upgrade at $141,000, plus tacked on an $8,800 administrative fee.

As a compromise, the winery proposed paying one-third of the upgrade cost upfront, then paying the balance in monthly installments over the next two years with no interest. The winery also asked for the administrative fee to be waived.

Council voted 6-1 against the request, with Coun. Erin Trainer registering the sole vote in favour.

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