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.

West Bench: Traditionalists versus Industrialists

Just in case you think the stakes are low in an OCP review, I thought I should make everyone aware of an emerging controversy on the West Bench: Traditionalists versus Industrialists. Although both views are complex and serious, I can sketch them as follows:

Neighborhoods: 

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.

OCP Review Citizens Committee

A Citizens Committee of approximately two dozen Area F residents has been created to help guide the OCP review process (recall the January call for applications).  The role of the committee is 

[...] as a community sounding board and as communication agents to talk to their neighbours and friends, etc.  We don’t expect them to go through policy by policy but to advise on the larger picture goals.

Members of the committee were selected to represent a cross-section of Area F residents in terms of:

  1. geographic location within the electoral area
  2. demographics (age, gender, etc.)

 

May 2017 Sage Mesa system boil water notice

The Sage Mesa water system is on a boil water notice.  See here:

Why?  The Sage Mesa does not filter or otherwise treat its water beyond dosing it with chlorine.  Chlorine is less effective when the water is turbid.  Below is a photo of Okanagan Lake near the Sage Mesa water system intake:

Issues: 

May 2017 flooding

The main RDOS site has a page for its Emergency Operations Centre:

http://www.rdos.bc.ca/news-events/eoc/current-eoc/

You can check this for the most recent updates about flooding in the the RDOS.  It also has contact information for getting sandbags.

The RDOS emergency management page has some advice on dealing with flooding (about half-way down the page):

http://www.rdos.bc.ca/departments/community-services/emergencyprotective-services/emergency-management/

 

Organics, carts, and landfills

The Campbell Mountain Landfill is the destination landfill for Penticton and most of Area F (rural Summerland uses the Summerland landfill).  The landfill itself is owned by the City of Penticton but leased by the RDOS on behalf of a slightly larger service area that includes Penticton but also Naramata, West Bench, and so on.  The RDOS, in turn, pays a contractor to manage the landfill.

(photo iNFOnews.ca)

There are two things I need to acknowledge about the landfill before talking about new initiatives:

A walking tour of finances in Area F

I have posted a webinar "walking tour" of finances in Area F of the RDOS.  It is just under 30 minutes long and attempts to explain (for example) why our taxes are generally higher than those in Naramata:

 

This webinar follows-on from my previous video in which I looked at the 2017 Area F budget.

 

In both cases these are pretty amateur affairs based on my dashboarding tool, which can be found here if you wish to explore on your own:

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