Asset Management A Top Priority in Petrolia

Posted: April 25, 2018

Asset Management a Top Priority in Petrolia

Petrolia, ON –  Councillor Liz Welsh, and Chief Administrative Officer/Treasurer Rick Charlebois are working toward obtaining their Professional Certificates in Asset Management Planning delivered through NAMS Canada.   Once certified, they will be able to master the key elements of an asset management plan, learn the essentials of a quality asset management plan, develop demand management options and priorities for capital works, articulate the benefits of an asset management plan and prepare an asset management plan and identify and document areas for improvement of the plan.

This training will propel Petrolia ahead in the 440 Ontario municipalities as a leader in asset management.  A well-written asset management plan is one of the first steps toward obtaining grant funding, and it will help ensure that investments are made at the right time to minimize future repair and rehabilitation costs and to maintain municipal assets.  It allows us to prove how Petrolia, ourselves, are assisting financially with any proposed projects to funding sources.  The course is almost entirely funded by that Federation of Canadian Municipalities and takes the course costs down from $2500.00 per registration to just $225.00. 

Mayor John McCharles said, “Our community infrastructure assets are critical to delivering the services that are key to delivering an excellent quality of life in our municipality.  Clean drinking water, sanitation, parks and recreation services, and roads are just a few items that rely on quality management of our infrastructure assets.  I am very pleased to see that a member of both Council and staff are passionate about this project for Petrolia and for our future.”

Councillor Welsh has a keen interest in asset management, and provided a successful and insightful presentation in Calgary in 2017, and has been a panelist for the Canadian Network of Asset Managers (CNAM) “Asset Management Introduction for Elected Officials” session in February where she answered questions and provided a presentation to offer insight to listeners of some of the basics around asset management with a focus on ‘what’ asset management is, and ‘why’ it is important for communities. 

Councillor Welsh was recently quoted in “Asset Management 101”, a document developed by CNAM through the Municipal Management Program, which is delivered by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and funded by the Government of Canada.  On page 8, under the heading of “Why is Asset Management important to your community?” Councillor Welsh is featured with the following quote: “We are ready for major funding announcements – reports and applications can be generated quickly with on hand information. Incoming Councillors and staff have a solid knowledge of where the municipality stands with its assets and the financial strategy to maintain and replace those assets.” — Councillor Liz Welsh, Town of Petrolia, Ont and again on page 24, under “Planning and Decision Making” where she says: “Your Asset Management Plan is valuable communication tool. It can be easily demonstrated to the public why specific roads are being revitalized (or not) or the need for a property tax increase or in Petrolia’s case, why we saw the need to create an Infrastructure sustainability fund in 2015 and were able to decrease our sewage rates in 2018” — Councillor Liz Welsh, Town of Petrolia, Ont. http://cnam.ca/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/CNAM_AM101_BOOKLET_EN_HIRES.pdf

Looking ahead to the Fall of 2018, Councillor Welsh and Mr. Charlebois will speak about Asset Management at the West Ontario Treasurers Conference, where a large part of the presentation will focus on Petrolia’s success as related to our Asset Management planning strategies and how our Mayor and Council and staff work together to be Asset Management champions.