The provincial government announced last week that they’ll be giving Lethbridge College $3.35 million for upgrading work.
The upgrading to the system in the Paterson Building is necessary, having been built in 1970. Upgrading the system will improve reliability and energy efficiency.
That being said, due to loss of operational funding from the province, Lethbridge College is seeking $3.1 million in budget cuts. So like the the capital funding announced for the University of Lethbridge’s heating and cooling system earlier this month, this is functionally taking the $3.1 million lost in operating funds and moving it over to capital funds. Give or take a couple hundred thousand.
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On a sort-of related note, the announcement also claimed that the capital project will be “creating an estimated 19 new jobs in the community” and “will generate new job opportunities for about 19 skilled contractors and tradespeople in the Lethbridge area”.
Remember, these will be primarily—if not exclusively—trade jobs. And while it’s great that HVAC workers and other tradespeople will have work to do for a few months, these workers are already working on other projects and will work on new projects once this project is complete. So, it’s not actually new jobs. New work, yes, but not new jobs.
Sure, there may be a few new people actually hired for the project, but it won’t be 19.