Area “G” Director’s report

Update on local governance in RDOS area "G"

  • Aug. 23, 2011 5:00 p.m.

After two years or more of negotiating, I finally got the OK – go ahead to install a bear proof garbage container at Red Bridge on Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure property. This garbage can is to be used by tourists, fishermen and swimmers and locals who are using this area for recreation.

Now we need to place a cement platform, where the garbage can, can be attached, here comes the six million dollar question; where do we place this garbage container ?

Also who is to look after emptying it and making sure the garbage pick-up people get the garbage.

Any suggestions from you people out there  –  Call 292-8620 or Anna 499-5785.

Olalla Water Works

Some time ago I applied for grant money, $130,000 to do an upgrade to Olalla water mains etc., to install an emergency reception so we can install a generator in case of power failure and also a spillway at the creek to the reservoir, again in case of no power, or if there is a fire so we always will have water to fight fires with. Approximate $100,000, will be used to replace badly needed water mains, so you will soon see workers digging up streets in Olalla. This grant also gave me the opportunity to apply to the board to have the Olalla water toll reduced  by $10 per hook-up, this should be in effect by next year, The current water tax requisition will be the same again next year. This year I was able to get all a reduction in property tax and I estimate another one next year, if re elected, as I am applying for another $1,000,000 to upgrade all the water systems in Olalla. I am confident I will be getting some amount toward this from my meetings with the different ministries at the upcoming UBCM meeting, as we have shown that working together is a benefit for all.

Garbage Issue

I hate to admit it, but I got beaten by the garbage people and I also believe some staff members didn’t take me seriously enough, and came up with many excuses to why it would not work to remove Area “G” away from the system and what implications it could have on other area’s etc. etc. etc. and so on.

Finally I was able to convince the board to see it my way, but by that time it was too late I was told and was advised April 5 that BFI Canada is not in a position to alter our request for proposal as submitted to the RDOS as they have equipment ordered and being delivered for Area “G”. However, now it is flagged, posted and if the contract with BFI is to be changed or opened by them there is a chance we can get out and find a cheaper way.

Untidy/Unsightly Premises Bylaw

I have had a lot of complaints about this bylaw, as some think that one person has to clean up but the other guy gets away with it for months and months, I am asked if that is fair, some ask, does it take months and months to clean up after bylaw officers have been at the site and nothing happens, what are we paying for?

A larger number of people have welcomed this bylaw and think it is the best thing that could be done. I hear from the bylaw enforcement people that it is hard for them when they get a complaint to order a clean up when across the street or next street down is the same mess or verse, but no complaint so it seems they take it easy, I am wondering what a bylaw like this will do to a neighbourhood, is it worth it? Well time will tell.

Keremeos Creek

Not much to report at this moment, as I am waiting for the consultant to make a report and to advise what we could or should do to prevent flooding every year and the risk of E Coli 0157 and Cryptosporidium bacteria that could be fatal to humans and not to forget the pooling of water which makes it a breeding ground for mosquitoes. I guess that a widening and deepening of the creek would be the answer, so I am booking time with the environment ministry and health department to see what funding there is available, more about this at a later date.

Keremeos Grist Mill

I somehow got involved with the Grist Mill when I was asked to help out with funding to make the tea-room and visiting centre more energy efficient as the building has over 57 single pane windows and also four double doors with cracks up to ¾” and the heating system is built into the ceiling and has poor response time, inadequate coverage, very expensive to operate and lack of A/C.

I thought no problem as I knew where to apply for funding, but wrong, when the Grist Mill is owned by the province there is no grant or funding available. The cost to make the building energy efficient is approximately $25,000 to day after five months we have managed to raise $13,000  from private organizations – in return all donators will receive a tax receipt and a plaque will be posted in the building so everyone can see who has helped. So if you have any spare change, see the Grist Mill Foundation.

Similkameen River Dike

I am still trying to have an assessment done to the dike after the ice jam six years ago as this year when the river was high a few places the water came through the dike.

Cell Service

I have now for three years been running my head against walls and doors at Telus, Bell and Rogers, and no one seems to care if there is cell service from Princeton to Keremeos and from Keremeos to Penticton on Highway 3A this leaves Hedley in the black, and today cell is needed not just for safety, I hear that Telus has been given hundreds of thousands of dollars to improve the net work but?


Continued next week with more about cell and radio and cemetery for Hedley.

– Elef Christensen