753 Waterworks users are given a platform

Outraged 753 Waterworks users met to discuss a plan of action about a pending service rate and tariff increase

Concerned 753 Waterworks users met Wednesday, September 9 at the Silver Creek Elementary School Gym to discuss the options related to a pending service rate and tariff increase. Attendees received an extensive information packet outlining the required waterworks upgrades as well as the legalities of the hikes.

Meeting organizers Sara Burleigh, Jessie Morris, and Ray Zervini gave the floor to a packed gym, which included dignitaries MLA Laurie Throness, Mayor Wilfried Vicktor, and Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) John Fortoloczky, as questions and concerns were fielded.

“It’s going through, and they don’t have the guts to tell you it’s going through,” said Burleigh of the legal obligation of users to comply with the company rate increase.

The exponential increase, which boasts a 130 per cent hike from the previous rate is on par with current water rate standards, according to stats, and a statement made by Throness during the meeting.

Failure on Deputy Comptroller Peter Bekker’s part and on behalf of the province to enforce or increase rates over the years has resulted in the rapid hike.

753 Water users may have caught a financial break over the years, but the system has fallen into a degraded state, based on the negligence of not only the comptroller, but the current owners and the facilitation of an extremely weak administration system.

The estimated total to complete improvements on the system from a District report dating back to 2011 is $539,000 (this does not specify current rates for 2015.) At the level of increase specified by the report and the current rate hike to complete improvements — the company would be expected to make a significant revenue, estimated at $159, 453, give or take a few potential expenses.

An excess of unpaid pills are also a current factor in the state of the system’s disrepair — according to Zervini, the company failed to mail out bills to an alarming number of customers, who will be expected to catch up in an expeditious manner.

“For now, it’s about putting that money in trust,” said Zervini, a suggestion made by organizers to quell the outrage of 753 users until further resolution can be determined.

A committee is currently being formed to rally for the District to take over the system, once it has been upgraded to a sufficient level — in the eventuality that does occur, all monies in the existing system would be transferred to the District to oversee the maintenance of the system.

Speeches by MLA Laurie Throness and Mayor Wilfried Vicktor, incited the audience, as Throness discussed the nature of banning together as a community to get things done, while offering his time and services to anyone who had concerns.

“I support the community in bringing the District on board,” said Throness.

Mayor Wilfried Vicktor, also addressed the community’s concerns about the District’s involvement with the takeover of the derelict system.

“District, council and staff are keen on assisting 753 users, but we have to be very cautious, because refurbishing a water system can be a very expensive venture,” he said. “An up to date third party evaluation of the 753 water system is probably a good first step, certainly, council feels that the BC water comptroller’s office was not doing a proper job and they should be held accountable by the province.”

Representatives from 753 Waterworks were unavailable for comment, or attendance at the meeting.

 

Just Posted

New welding equipment for Hope Secondary

More time on welders for Hope high school students, thanks to new gear

Hope teens headed to BC Winter Games

Julius Brysch, 14, and Danielle Bacon, 13, are in Kamloops this weekend

UPDATE: 10-20 cm of snow expected Friday in Lower Mainland

Snowfall warning in effect from North Shore mountains out to Hope

Parents cross over painting job on 6 Ave. crosswalks

Crosswalks, not painted since September, are a safety concern for two parents

Yale First Nation project preserves elders’ memories and recipes

Community members are encouraged to share their traditional food recipes by Feb. 28

VIDEO: “Being Ts’elxweyeqw” book officially launched

Ts’elxwéyeqw tribe captures history with new book in a manner true to cultural form

Canucks fold 5-3 in first ever trip to Vegas

Daniel Sedin had two points as Canucks fall to the Golden Knights Friday night

That’s a wrap: B.C. Games results after Day 1

Vancouver-Coastal Zone 5 is in the lead for medals Friday at the Kamloops 2018 B.C. Winter Games

Sticking the landing at the B.C. Games

Gymnasts talk competition, B.C. Winter Games, and teamwork in Kamloops

$153M in federal cash to fund child care, education training in B.C.

Bilateral agreement will create 1,370 new infant and toddler spaces

A B.C. woman talks her life in the sex trade

A view into the life from one Kelowna prostitute and the issues it can cause for women

Twitter feed prays for — instead of preying on — B.C. MLAs

Non-partisan Christian group wants to support politicians through personalized prayer

Guards hold noon-hour protest over prison safety

Number of inmates, attacks on officers, increasing says union

UPDATE: At least two hospitalized after plane leaves runway at Abbotsford Airport

Incident occurred around noon on Friday; Transport Canada investigating

Most Read