Welcome to the website for Area F of the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS)

The practical objective of this site is to increase two-way communication between you and your local government. Although the RDOS has a fully-functional website, this site is meant to be less formal and, as a consequence, more timely.  See the Area 'F' page on the official RDOS website.

Why not compost at Campbell Mountain?

In a comment on a previous post, George Bush (Director for RDOS Electoral Area G) asks: Why not compost sewage sludge at Campbell Mountain if that is where it is going to be used as biocover anyway?  This is a good question so I asked Cam Baughen at the RDOS for some additional background on why Campbell Mountain did not even make the RDOS's shortlist of potential regional composting sites.  Basically, the site has two critical shortcomings:

End of equal payment plan for the West Bench Water System

The RDOS offered an "equal payment plan" option for West Bench water system customers.  We have decided to eliminate the option for the simple reason that it takes too much staff time to administrate.  Given that this staff time is charged back to the water system, this is ultimately a cost-reduction measure.  Those on the plan should have already received a letter telling them that they are being switched over to quarterly billing.  Quarterly billing is simple: you are billed for what you owe at the end of the quarter.  If you use more water in the summer (we all do), your summer bill will be higher than your winter bill.

Some background: two things are required to implement an equal-payment plan for the water system:

  1. Usage forecasts for each customer
  2. A reconciliation process at the end of the year

 

Neighborhoods: 

Regional Compost site reboot

As you may have heard, the Regional District is having difficulty securing a location for the new regional composting site.  This is frustrating because a regional composting site is intended to do two things: (a) avoid significant costs and (b) reduce our environmental impact. 

I certainly understand that people don’t want a waste-related facility anywhere near them.  But, if we are to realize the economic and environmental benefits of such a facility, it has to be located somewhere.  So rather than hosting a screaming contest (to see who can muster the loudest and most angry opposition to the site), I am in favor of making the decision based on more objective technical and economic criteria.  People are going to scream no matter what.  But we have to make the decision that it is the long-term interest of the broader community.

Round 2 Information Session: 29 November at West Bench School

The RDOS will host a public information session at West Bench Elementary on Wednesday, November 29, from 7-8:30 PM.  The purpose of the information session is to:

  1. Ensure residents understand the scenarios used in Round 2 of the OCP survey
  2. Present some preliminary results from Round 2 (there may be some surprises!)
  3. Answer any questions residents may have.
  4. Set the stage for Round 3 of the OCP survey.

 

Update 28 Nov 2017: I have included a draft of the presentation slides for the meeting

Solar bollards on West Bench Hill Road

You may have noticed two black solar bollards near the walking path on West Bench Hill Road.  Yes, I know they are different heights, the wrong color, and pretty pathetic looking.  These are two test installations of a product we are considering for unlit portions of the path.  We want to see how the bollards perform in action (light, durability, and so on) before we spend a bunch of money.

Neighborhoods: 

Good news for Faulder Water

Well, that only took a decade! Great news nonetheless:

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) has received approval from the Interior Health Authority to rescind both the Water Quality Advisory for uranium (issued August, 2007) and the Water Quality Advisory for commissioning the new system (issued February 14, 2017). As this is a new treatment system the potential for subsequent advisories exists, however the system is currently showing consistent acceptable results for bacteriological quality and uranium removal. We will continue to monitor all aspects of the system closely.

Link to press releaser

Issues: 
Neighborhoods: 

If your recycling is not picked up

Just got the following note from Cam at the RDOS about recycling.  Garbage/recycling is one of the most expensive (and beneficial!) things we do at the RDOS. To minimize the costs for everyone, we ask you to do a little bit of work on your end, while you still have the item of waste in your hand.

From Cam:

Due to a resident’s concerns I went along West Bench Drive today. I checked over 20 recycle bags that were left. They were all left for contaminates in the recycling, which I confirmed. Materials that we cannot accept that are in the bags left today:

NIMBY-ism and tough composting decisions

Part of being an RDOS director is that occasionally you are on the receiving end of public outrage about this decision or that decision.  My email inbox currently runneth over with demands that the Marron Valley option be removed from the short list of new compost sites.  What is missing from these letters is an alternative location.  To spell it out: When you say, “Not in my backyard” in this type of decision problem you are really saying, “In someone else’s backyard.”  Just demanding “somewhere else” is not sufficient because RDOS staff have already looked at pretty much the whole region (the advantage of a good mapping system).  And the status quo has significant financial implications for all of us.  So just telling us you don’t want a composting site near you is not new news.  What we require is information that causes us to reassess the balance of trade-offs.

Area F Official Community Plan Review

This thread is used to hold information about the 2017 Area F Official Community Plan review. The main RDOS site also has a section dedicated to the review: Area F OCP Review

The purpose of the thread on this site is to provide a more informal mechanism for sharing information, voicing concerns, and finding out what is going on.  For example, this site allows you to post comments (the main RDOS site does not).  You will see directly below this message a hierarchy of links to information (as it evolves and becomes available).

An OCP review is a long process.  Please let me know if you have any questions or comments as we go along.

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