Columbia Valley Pioneer staff

Rob Gay and Susan Clovechok have been re-elected by acclamation to head the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) for another term.

During recent elections, Electoral Area C Director Gay was given a vote of confidence for this 13th term as chair. “Our board has developed strong, respectful working relationships and I’m looking forward to another productive year,” said Gay, who has been on the board since 2005 and is the RDEK’s longest serving chair.

Electoral Area F Director Clovechok was elected as vice-chair for a fourth year.  

“I am grateful for the continued confidence and support of my fellow directors in re-electing me,” she said. “I have learned a tremendous amount over the past three years and am honoured and energized by being able to work on behalf of the residents of our region in this capacity.”

Gay will be providing his year-in-review in December. “My outline includes a few sentences on emergencies and wildfires of course, but drought is also a concern for all residents,” Gay told the Pioneer. 

The chair noted the RDEK has made some major policy changes in 2023 including updating its building regulations and rolling out a short-term rental policy. “In terms of dollars ($12 million), our largest project is debris/flood control on Cold Spring Creek in Fairmont, which is underway.”

Gay said the RDEK has a long list of projects tied to its new strategic plan. “During Q1/24 a big focus is on our financial plan. Protective services, recreation projects, and making improvements in our solid waste and waste diversion services will consume much of staff’s time in 2024,” he pointed out. 

On the Kootenay East Hospital Board side, adding a new tower to include renal and maybe cancer treatment is on the wish list, Gay said.