A potential solution has been found to the RDCK's controversial sustainability service that would see municipalities drop out of the function.

RDCK sustainability service may become rural only

A controversial Regional District of Central Kootenay service may be retooled for rural areas only.

A controversial Regional District of Central Kootenay service may be retooled for rural areas only.

Seven areas, including New Denver, Nakusp, Salmo, and Castlegar, wanted out of the sustainability service, established four years ago to deal with things like energy conservation and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

However, several areas suggest its scope has grow beyond what was originally intended and in some cases is duplicating municipal services and projects.

A committee was struck to look at the service’s future, which met at the end of last month and recommended that it continue without municipal participation.

More discussion is expected before a final decision, which require a two-thirds vote of the board and approval from the inspector of municipalities.

Although some rural areas wanted to withdraw too, including portions of rural Creston represented by chair John Kettle, he suggested the revamped service may be more palatable to them. “If we restructure, it may fit better for rural directors than it did for all of us,” he said.

Although the committee had until September to report back, Kettle is pleased they didn’t need that long to find a potential solution.

“It was excellent work and proves if directors sit down, they can hash out where they want to go,” he said. “I think the idea that it would be a rural [service] is excellent and will pass.”

Rural Castlegar director Andy Davidoff, who sat on the committee, said they had a “very respectful conversation about a very thorny issue. Even though it was one meeting, I think we did a deep analysis.”

Nelson was the only member of the regional district that didn’t join the service.

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