Fish and Wildlife cuts makes us long for Robin Hood

Living in major metropolitan areas, it’s easy to forget about the rural communities like Nelson around you.

Living in major metropolitan areas, it’s easy to forget about the rural communities around you.

In Vancouver, it’s easy to take for granted what happens in communities like Nelson, Trail and Castlegar and ignore what is at stake.

In October, the Star began telling the story of cuts to the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program.

The program is an adjunct to BC Hydro and with the crown corporation tightening its purse strings, the Nelson office faced elimination, along with seven jobs.

This week we heard MLA Bill Bennett dangle the carrots of “community engagement meetings” and restructured committees. He says the government is trying to take something successful and make it better.

Well and good, we suppose, but what about saving those jobs and retaining institutional memory and expertise?

The program’s successes are well known, but that doesn’t seem to hold much weight in the interest of cutting heads.

BC Hydro says this is not about saving money — it is obligated to spend $8 million in the Columbia region on fish and wildlife projects — which makes the layoffs all the more baffling.

Hydro executives take home fat paycheques while local biologists are left looking for work. Even those who find other jobs within the company will probably have to relocate their families from West Kootenay.

Cuts are made throughout the province, and while this is often necessary, we’re not convinced they’re always in the right place.

Nurses, hospital employees, and a wide range of public service employees were forced to take a net zero wage increase, while teachers are still fighting for a raise.

Maybe if we cut from the top instead of the bottom, we’d find a little more money in government bank accounts.


Just Posted

Nelson, Salmo councils decline to contribute to preservation of Cottonwood forest

The decisions have effectively stalled negotiations between the RDCK and the landowner, Kootenay Land Corporation

KBRH on watch for bed bugs after two recent cases

Spokesperson Mandy Lowery says there has not been a bed bug sighting at KBRH since Dec. 8

Avalanche Canada issues special public warning

Very weak layer buried under recent snow a cause for concern

Coffee card donations return at Wait’s News

The program supplied over 200 cards last year

Trafalgar students build home for sanctuary horse

Grade 8 students collaborated on a project with a local farm sanctuary

VIDEO: Royals reveal the images on their Christmas cards

Prince William and his wife Kate are shown outside in casual clothes, their three young children in tow

Media, robotics, Indigenous studies coming to B.C. Grade 12 classrooms in 2019-20

Provincial tests are also being changed for students in Grade 10 to 12, the Education Ministry said

ICBC to apply for 6.3% hike to basic insurance rates

Crown Corporation said it will be submitting its next basic rate application to the British Columbia Utilities Commission Friday

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Canfor Corp. extending temporary curtailment of sawmills in B.C.; cutting hours

Vancouver-based company says the decision is due to declining lumber prices, high log costs and log supply constraints

Canada’s prospective world junior team members await final roster decisions

Thirty-four players were invited to the national junior selection camp

Final phase of Kelowna hospital cardiac centre completed

Finishing new recovery rooms marks completion of $381 million project

Family searching for B.C. professor last seen at Colombian salsa club

Ramazan Gencay, a professor in economics at Simon Fraser University, was last seen in Medellin

Rash of bomb threats a learning opportunity for response capacity, Goodale

Thursday’s wave of bomb threats swept across communities on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border

Most Read