RDCK delays water board proposal

The Regional District of Central Kootenay has shelved the idea of creating a water supply board until January.

A regional water board for small water systems in the Regional District of Central Kootenay won't become a reality before next year.

The Regional District of Central Kootenay has shelved the idea of creating a water supply board until January.

The new body would be comprised of the 11 rural regional directors plus the Town of Creston and govern the 19 water systems the district owns and operates, including South Slocan, Ymir, Riondel, Balfour, Edgewood, Fauquier, Burton, and Erickson. However, some directors including rural Salmo’s Hans Cunningham, who asked for the delay, want a cost-benefit analysis first.

“The difference is operating the water systems centrally or from their separate areas,” he said. “When you operate centrally, you have the benefit of specialized knowledge but because we’re a large regional district, we have a long way to go to service systems on the outside areas.”

Cunningham said in Ymir’s case, annual rates have more than quadrupled in recent years and are now about twice what people in Creston pay — whereas it used to be about the same or a little lower. He blamed the increase on the fact maintenance is no longer handled by someone in the community.

Cunningham added that he didn’t want the water board to become an election issue: “This is silly season. I’d like to discuss it sanely.”

However, rural Kaslo director Andy Shadrack balked at the delay, saying it could further hold up the regional district’s acquisition of other community water systems, including one in his area. “They were in the process of becoming a [regional district] system and have been held up 18 months. That simply isn’t fair,” he said.

Directors narrowly voted in favour of referring the matter until after November’s elections. In the meantime, they are expected to further study the idea.

When it was put forth earlier this year, administrator Brian Carruthers said the water board was intended to “ensure consistency in how water services are delivered.”

Existing volunteer management commissions would remain in place for the time being, but the water board would have to decide whether they would continue to have a role in operating the systems and setting rates.

For most of the last 15 years, the regional district has had a moratorium on taking over any new water systems, except for a period between 2010 and 2012 when several were added.

The new water board could consider lifting the moratorium, but its main focus would be existing systems.

This story will appear in the West Kootenay Advertiser.

 

Just Posted

10 RDCK incumbents seek re-election

Most rural directors want another term

Slocan Valley added to communities on flooding evac alert

Kootenay Lake is expected to reach flooding level in Nelson by Friday

Police searching for Nelson man

Brent Mickelson hasn’t been heard from since February

UPDATED: Hwy 3 west of Creston remains closed due to mudslide

A detour is available on the Kootenay Lake Ferry, but commuters could see wait times

Local police recognized for work

Eight officers were honoured for removing impaired drivers

VIDEO: Canadian Forces help flood-ravaged Grand Forks residents heal

Sgt. Bradley Lowes says the military is used to dealing with traumatic times

Chilliwack Chiefs make history with first RBC Cup win

In front of a huge and noisy crowd, the Chiefs claimed their first-ever national junior A title.

UPDATED: Majority of flood evacuees in Kootenay-Boundary allowed to return home

Officials hope to have all 3,000 people back in their homes by Monday night

B.C. Lions bring back 6-time all-star offensive lineman Jovan Olafioye

He was acquired by the Montreal Alouettes last year.

Whitecaps rally for 2-2 draw with FC Dallas

Vancouver climbed out of a two-nil hole to tie FC Dallas 2-2

B.C. VIEWS: Making sense of climate policy

Flood and fire predictions have poor track record so far

Chilliwack Chiefs moving on to RBC Cup final after thrilling win over Ottawa

Kaden Pickering scored the winning goal in the 3rd period as Chilliwack won their semi-final 3-2.

VIDEO: As floodwaters recede, crews assess the damage to Grand Forks’ downtown

More than four dozen firefighters and building inspectors came out to help

Wellington Dukes pull off epic upset of Wenatchee at RBC Cup

The Dukes are off to the championship game after downing the Wild 2-1 Saturday at Prospera Centre.

Most Read