Meadow Creek Cedar license to be cancelled

For the second time in little over a year, the Meadow Creek Cedar forest license is on the brink of being cancelled.

For the second time in little over a year, the Meadow Creek Cedar forest license is on the brink of being cancelled.

The notice, announced by the Ministry of Forests on Monday, is effective Aug. 7, barring any postponements. The Forest Act requires a 90-day notification period and a chance for the license holder to request a review or appeal the notice.

In a statement, the ministry said it issued the notice due to its dissatisfaction with steps taken to date by Meadow Creek Cedar to meet remediation order deadlines and its “extensive history” of non-compliance in managing financial and legal obligations under the license.

It’s still possible for Meadow Creek Cedar, owned by Surrey’s Dale Kooner, to sell and transfer the license, but only if the ministry is satisfied a qualified buyer can be found before cancellation takes effect. Kooner is believed to be in negotiations with several parties.

If cancelled, the license would revert to the Crown to decide how best to use the volume. However, it probably wouldn’t be transferred until the next timber supply review. The license has an annual allowable cut of 96,500 cubic meters, with most of the operation located around Kootenay Lake north of Kaslo.

Rural Kaslo regional director Aimee Watson said if the license is cancelled, there is no guarantee whoever gets the timber would rebuild the mill at Cooper Creek that burned last year or have a stake in the immediate community’s well being.

“Nothing in legislation gives preference to local capacity,” she said. “It’s really just hoping at this point the Crown recognizes how important [the license] is to North Kootenay Lake economic activity and chooses an outfit that keeps the mill open. Without it, the logs will be transferred somewhere else.”

Watson said some local contractors were trying to team up to buy the license, and the cancellation notice, with its looming deadline, may or may not help.

“It changes the game a bit and could be advantageous or not,” she said.

Meadow Creek Cedar met some but not all of the requirements of a remediation order by a March 31 deadline. District forest manager Garth Wiggill said last month the company ordered trees for planting this spring, but the ministry seized about 11,000 cubic meters of unmilled logs to sell to other mills and service Crown debts. However, at the time the ministry was waiting on a legal opinion before deciding how to proceed.

Wiggill wasn’t available for an interview this week, but Watson said he has “been fantastic” about doing his best within limited legislation to look out for the community’s interests.

The Meadow Creek license was previously issued cancellation notice in January 2014. However, the cancellation was rescinded after Kooner worked out a deal to sell it to San Group, which paid off $150,000 in accrued debts, “substantially met” a remediation order and restarted the sawmill at Cooper Creek.

The license was suspended again last year not long before the mill burned. The company faced lawsuits and liens from its former logging contractor and a woodlot owner.

Just Posted

Seven Nelson rec projects granted Columbia Basin Trust funding

Nelson’s baseball and tennis clubs were the big winners

UPDATE: Two-car accident closes Highway 3A at Thrums

Road expected to open for single-lane alternating traffic at 2 p.m.

1919: Hudson’s Bay Company gets an addition, council votes to exclude ‘undesirable enemy aliens’

Greg Scott brings us five Nelson Daily News stories from a century ago

Call a foul on cancer with the Pink Whistle Campaign

Local basketball referees are raising money for cancer research

Man found dead identified as Andreas Pittinger

Pittinger was known locally for hosting a radio show

VIDEO: Canada’s flag turns 54 today

The maple leaf design by George Stanley made its first appearance Feb. 15, 1965

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Plecas won’t run in next election if B.C. legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Snow turns to slush, rain as it warms up across B.C.’s south coast

Some areas are already covered by more than half a metre of snow following three separate storms

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Most Read