District targets back-up water plan

Coldstream would like to flush out details of what will come down the pipeline if the master water plan borrowing referendum fails

Coming off the heels of Drinking Water Week, Coldstream would like to flush out details of what will come down the pipeline if the master water plan borrowing referendum fails.

“What we should be showing people is these are the facts and they should be voting,” said Coun. Gyula Kiss.

Greater Vernon will be asked during the November municipal elections to approve up to $70 million for the plan. The plan includes $26.5 million for filtration at the Duteau Creek treatment plant – a requirement of the Interior Health Authority.

“This is a pretty significant referendum,” said Coun. Peter McClean.

But such requirements aren’t necessary in some minds since the majority of the water coming from Duteau is being used for irrigation. Therefore there is speculation that the referendum could fail.

“This is, in my opinion, not a master water plan I can support,” said Kiss, who had requested a review of the plan at the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee, which was shot down.

Mayor Jim Garlick suspects that decision alone could factor into how voters make their mark.

“If you were wanting this to be a success it would have been really good to have a peer review,” said Garlick.

“We should actually start looking at the fact that the referendum may fail and what action we should be taking.”

While GVAC will look to IHA for direction if the referendum fails, Garlick says the demands of IHA are facing resistance in other areas as well.

“We have a lot of other things muddying the waters there,” said Garlick, noting that the region should wait and see if Kelowna is going to get a permanent exemption from upgrades IHA has put on that area.

He hopes to see the discussion take place at GVAC.

“The conversation has to take place there. It’s important to get those people on board there and on our side.”

 

Vernon Morning Star

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