Water users in some areas of the Columbia Shswap Regional District will be paying more.
“In order to address escalating water system costs (electricity, gas, telephone, Internet, chemicals and permit fees) and to facilitate the reallocation of applicable staff time to the relevant water system budgets, an annual increase of two per cent to the user fee is proposed to be implemented for Falkland, Cedar Heights, Eagle Bay, MacArthur Heights/Reedman Point and Sorrento Water Systems,” Utilities Team Leader Terry Langlois told directors at the Jan. 19 board meeting in Salmon Arm.
“Annual increases are anticipated to be implemented in the Cottonwoods Water System beginning in 2018, the Sunnybrae Water System in 2019 and the Saratoga Water System in 2020.”
Langlois told directors that Galena Shores will not require an increase to user fees, as the current fees and taxes are adequate to cover the budget.
He explained that there are differences between the various water systems, many with different needs, varying distances from water source to the system and health requirements. As well, regulations for small water systems are not as stringent as for bigger systems.
“Some water systems need more work and there have been recent upgrades for some systems,” Langlois said. “We have systems as small as 60 lots to ones with 1,300, and the more we can divide up costs, the cheaper it is for everybody. That being said, Anglemeont has lots of properties but lots of debt.”
Area C director Paul Demenok voiced his approval, pointing out the need to build up reserves in order to be able to address water system maintenance and improvements as required.
“It is prudent for us to do this at this time.”