Sewer being forced in Coldstream

District also looking at 2.75 per cent tax hike, and start to year showing a building boom

The District of Coldstream is making sewer connection mandatory. - Morning Star File Photo

The District of Coldstream is making sewer connection mandatory. - Morning Star File Photo

Sewer enforcement is coming down the pipeline in Coldstream.

A mandatory connection to sanitary sewer is being implemented for those homes that have a line going past their house but aren’t yet hooked up.

“They have two years to connect to the system and that the connection fee will be waived for two years. After two years, they will be required to pay the connection fee,” said Trevor Seibel, chief administrative officer, in a report to council.

The connection fee is also being increased to $5,000 – the current fee is $2,000.

Sewer base and consumption fees are the same for residential, commercial and multi-family as follows: $94.10/quarter base fee which includes up to 15 cubic metres of consumption after which the consumption rate is $2.51 per cubic metre.

Taxes hiked

Coldstream residents are looking at an additional $58 in taxes this year.

The draft budget currently under review by council includes a tax rate increase of 2.75 per cent ($58 per year for the average residential property, or $4.80 per month).

“The District has been proactive in implementing financial policies to better position ourselves for the future,” said Patricia Higgens, Coldstream’s chief of financial administration, in the five-year financial plan. “Of the 2.75 per cent proposed tax rate, 1.5 per cent is allocated for infrastructure needs and will allow replacement of our park assets as well as putting funds into a Community Hall reserve for upgrades and/or replacement of the WI Hall.”

The net additional cash requirement for 2017 is $157,900 ($72,085 – operations, $57,210 – Community Hall reserve, $28,605 equipment reserve for replacement of parks assets).

Building boom

It’s been a busy start to the year for construction in Coldstream.

For just January and February, a total of 10 permits have been issued with a total construction value of more than $3 million (which wasn’t reached until April last year).

“The number of housing units in 2017 so far is three times that of last year, and construction value is more than double,” said Bob Bibby, building official, adding that a total of eight applications were also received for processing in February.