RDNO moves water budget ahead

Regional District of North Okanagan board gave approval in principle to Greater Vernon Water’s budget

The latest financial plan for Greater Vernon’s water utility didn’t draw any debate.

There was no discussion Wednesday as the Regional District of North Okanagan board gave approval in principle to Greater Vernon Water’s budget, including an average two per cent rate increase.

“We’ve hashed it out at the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee,” said director Mike Macnabb when asked why there were no comments at the board table Wednesday.

“We had two or three meetings on water and we looked at options.”

The budget includes $5 million for new projects and $4 million for work carried over from 2015.

Among those projects moving ahead are replacing water meters, expanding dam capacity and extending the Kalamalka Lake intake.

Macnabb doesn’t believe there should be many public concerns about the budget.

“It’s essentially status quo. It’s a small increase,” he said.

While there is an average two per cent rate hike for 2016, all customers’ bills will vary depending on their water use.