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Prison pursuit goes regional

The Village of Lumby is rallying regional support for a prison.

Mayor Kevin Acton has asked North Okanagan Regional District directors to take an active role in Lumby trying to obtain a correctional facility.

“It’s a huge economic opportunity for the North Okanagan,” he said.

“I am urging municipalities and communities to write the public safety minister and say that they want a facility at this end of the valley.”

The provincial government is wanting to hear from communities interested in hosting a prison by the end of April.

Village officials have stated that a facility would bolster Lumby’s economy, and while some residents approve of the plan, others have expressed opposition.

The village may hold a telephone poll to determine the level of public support.

Transit Shelters Approved

North Okanagan residents will have somewhere dry to stand while waiting for the bus.

The North Okanagan Regional District has approved bus shelters for Highway 97A at the Super-Save gas station in Enderby, Pleasant Valley Road at the Vernon Christian School in BX-Swan Lake, Whitevale Road near Franklyn Road in rural Lumby and on the frontage road at the mobile home park across from the Tolko mill in Spallumcheen.

The Ministry of Transportation is paying for the shelters but NORD will be responsible for maintenance. And that is a concern for director Mike Macnabb.

“What happens if B.C. Transit changes the routes?” he said.

“We could have a perfectly good shelter at a location and no bus.”

All of the shelters will be constructed out of wood, except for the Pleasant Valley Road shelter which will be built out of metal.

Antwerp Springs Wells Abandoned

A Lavington water source has been shut down.

The North Okanagan Regional District board has ratified a Greater Vernon Advisory Committee recommendation to abandon Antwerp wells one and two for domestic use.

“The plan is to have them for agricultural uses only,” said Arnold Badke, engineering general manager.

“Non-potable service could be firefighting or any non-domestic use.”

In January 2010, fecal-contaminated surface water entered Antwerp well one. That situation impacted about 3,000 residents.

Well two was shut down, but tests have shown no contamination.

However, the Interior Health Authority required proof that a well seal was installed, and that would involve considerable work and expense.

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