Press release from Mississippi River Power Corp.
Mississippi River Power Corp.’s Brian J. Gallagher generating station paying dividends
At the Mississippi Mills Council meeting held on April 19, 2016, Paul Virgin, President of Mississippi River Power Corporation (MRPC), presented two cheques to Mayor Shaun McLaughlin totalling $383,432.70.
The first cheque, for $158,432.70, included the annual interest on the promissory note held by the Municipality, and rent for the office building at 28 Mill Street.
The second cheque, for $225,000, represented the first dividend payment from MRPC to the Municipality. The dividend payment was made possible by the success of the new generating station built on the lower falls in 2010.
The funds presented equal 5% of taxes raised in 2016. Without the cheques, the Municipality would have had to either raise taxes, borrow, or dip into reserves.
MRPC was incorporated in 2000, after the Electricity Competition Act 1998 forced Almonte Hydro to split its generation and distribution assets and incorporate them as private corporations. The generation assets of Almonte Hydro, which were technically owned by the Municipality, were transferred to MRPC, with a promissory note going back to Mississippi Mills. It’s the interest on this promissory note that MRPC has paid to the Municipality annually. As of the end of 2015, MRPC has paid over $1.7M in interest payments to Mississippi Mills.
In addition to the promissory note interest and dividend payments, MRPC has also provided hundreds of thousands of dollars in offset costs to the Municipality.
There are leases between the Municipality and MRPC for both 28 Mill Street and Metcalfe Park. Both are owned by Mississippi Mills, but maintained and upgraded by MRPC. MRPC has paid over $300,000 in rent for 28 Mill Street and spent over $180,000 on maintenance and improvements to the building.
Since taking over responsibility for Metcalfe Park in 2011, MRPC has spent over $400,000 on maintenance and improvements. Those improvements include:
- a complete rebuild of the public washroom (now accessible)
- paving and improving the parking lot and boat launch
- new retaining wall at water’s edge
- new riverwalk pathway
- new geoheritage display
Additional improvements coming this summer include shoreline planting (courtesy of Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority) and a dock at the boat launch.
In total, MRPC has provided the Municipality of Mississippi Mills nearly $3,000,000 in interest payments, dividends, rent, and offset costs. These payments from MRPC to the Municipality benefit all residents of Mississippi Mills and will continue to do so long into the future.