Several items of interest to the Columbia Valley came up for discussion at the most recent Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) board of directors meeting.
During the Friday, December 2nd meeting, directors voted to send a letter to Multi-Material Management of BC (MMBC) asking that the RDEK be added the MMBC’s list of regions wanting to partner with the agency on its Depot Collection Financial Incentive opportunity.
“This has been an ongoing issue for a few years,” RDEK environmental services manager Kevin Paterson told The Echo. “Essentially, we are not serviced by MMBC. There is one recycling depot at the Cranbrook Bottle Depot for the entire East Kootenay, but MMBC does not partner with the RDEK on (recycling) collection.”
Paterson explained that this is somewhat unfair to East Kootenay residence, since private companies put a surcharge on their products sold across B.C. that is meant to cover the cost of any recycling by MMBC associated with those products. Since MMBC doesn’t collect recycling here, the RDEK has no option but to collect recycling using taxpayers dollars, which means East Kootenay residents, as in other remote parts of B.C., are essentially paying for recycling twice — once through the surcharge and again through tax used by the RDEK to collect recycling.
“(Asking to join Depot Collection Financial Incentive opportunity) is an effort on our behalf to get better services for our residents,” said Paterson. “If we were to join, (the RDEK) would be paid to collect recyclables at our transfer stations. It’s not a completely fair exchange as we would still incur cots. But our hope is we would at least get some expense paid back, instead of the nothing we currently get.”
Paterson said the yellow bins in Invermere (which are meant for a mix of commercial and residential recycling and waste materials) wouldn’t qualify for the Depot Collection Financial Incentive opportunity program, since the program is intended solely for residential materials.
“It’s not ideal, but we’re trying to get in the game, so that MMBC shoulders some of its responsibility,” he said.
Other modifications necessary for the RDEK to qualify for the Depot Collection Financial Incentive opportunity program include the need for the RDEK to have on-site personnel at its transfer stations to monitor them.
Wasa inherits Invermere Zamboni
Columbia Valley RDEK directors decided that the old Eddie Mountain Memorial Arena Zamboni will be donated to the Wasa and District Lions Club for use on Wasa’s outdoor community ice rink. A new Zamboni for the Eddie Mountain Memorial Arena was purchased by the RDEK earlier this year.
“The Lions Club approached (RDEK Area E) director Jane Walter and asked, since they knew we had a surplus Zamboni in Invermere,” said Paterson. “The Columbia Valley directors agreed to the request and I believe the Zamboni was shipped down (in mid-December). I’m sure they are making good use of it in Wasa in these conditions. (The outdoor rink) is a great facility they have there.”
The Zamboni is kept in a garage by the Lions.
Rest in peace
RDEK chair Rob Gay and chief administrative officer Shawn Tomlin signed a pair of agreements — one to continue to providing funding to the Fairmont Evergreen Cemetery for the next five years and another to continue providing funding for the operation and maintenance of the Brisco Community Hall, columbarium (the large cement block where people inter ashes of loved ones) and cemetery for the next five years.
The funding for the Fairmont Evergreen Cemetery “varies each year, depending on their budget needs” RDEK corporate officer Shannon Moskal told The Echo, adding it’s usually between $5,000 and $8,000 a year, and was $5,800 last year. The amount going to operation and maintenance of the Edgewater community hall, columbarium and cemetery was $11,000, according to Moskal.
The money for both contributions is raised through local services areas in Fairmont and Brisco.
Spur Valley well
The RDEK signed a licence of occupation with the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations for the Spur Valley water systems groundwater well. This tenure covers the groundwater well, the pipeline from the well to the pumphouse and the wireless Internet tower put up to run the water system’s remote monitoring capability.