The City of Prince Rupert will now be responsible for paying monthly maintenance fees at Watson Island, but Mayor Jack Mussallem said those payments are likely to be less than what was paid by the Watson Island Development Corporation (WatCo).
Court filings submitted by WatCo indicate the company was paying the city between $75,000 and $90,000 per month, with the last cheque accepted in January. Those payments will not be coming as WatCo is now pursuing legal action against the city, leaving the city to foot the bill. But Mussallem said what will be paid has been cut by recent activity at the site.
“The city has been working with other parties to reduce those monthly payments … I don’t have the exact dollar amount, but we have been able to do some work following an agreement on the materials on the site,” he said.
“Some chemicals have been shipped out, the PCBs have been shipped out and some of the transformers are gone … it is starting to lessen some of the costs that were associated with looking after those items.”
While not commenting on the specifics of the case involving WatCo, Mussallem said the sale of the island is still on the minds of council.
“We have been talking to a variety of parties interested in Watson Island and looking at what kind of uses that property could have,” he said.