Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Readers write - who represents the people?

The article below is in response to the Morning Star's article entitled "GMO issue sent to regional board" published October 23rd, 2013.

If Advisory Committee won't advise and Representative won't represent, who can people count on?

Since NORD was unwilling to make a decision on supporting, or not supporting the resolution proposed by BeeSAFE to be a GMO free community, they formed the RAAC over a year ago. The role of this committee was to advise NORD on this issue so they could make the decision.

The proof of contamination has been admitted by the committee itself showing that co-existence is impossible.

For director Macnabb, chair of the committee to now refuse to give advice makes a mockery of the entire process and of the hundreds of people who showed up at meetings or wrote letters asking NORD to protect organic and conventional growers. It is also an insult to committee members who took their responsibility seriously.

The two communities in RDNO that held a vote on GMO both voted over 90% to become GE FREE.  At UBCM 60% of community leaders voted to ask the province to make all of BC GE FREE. For the chair to now refuse to give advice on this matter is unacceptable. It is a blatant diversionary tactic and a clear refusal to represent the public who has spoken clearly on this matter.

The actions, or non-actions of director Macnabb, have made it clear from the beginning he has been opposed to our region working to be GE FREE.  Further proof came when he took the mic at UBCM  to urge other leaders to not support the resolution to make BC GE FREE.

Clearly director Macnabb should step down as chair of this committee.

Director Macnabb states," the people can make their own choice". They already have. Yet NORD continues to defer this issue, to neither accept the votes that have occurred or do their own referendum, even though they have been informed that time is of great importance. This is a clear indication that NORD is refusing to represent the people.
The recent charges against NORD for not doing due diligence in protecting the water of this area can also apply to this. Despite having been clearly informed about the severe environmental, health and economic risks associated with allowing GM crops to continue, they are not protecting our area from further contamination while being completely aware that by not making a decision, they are allowing further contamination.

If the board on Nov. 6th. cannot make a decision based on the will of the people, if they refuse to accept the votes that have occurred as representative, then they must call for a referendum without delay.

Huguette Allen, Jane Emlyn, Carla Vierke
co-founders, Bee SAFE 


Comparing tax bills - Vernon vs Coldstream 2013.

While the following example is but a small component of the factors to be considered in the amalgamation-unification debate here is a simple comparison of the 2013 tax bill of my property had it been located in Vernon and the actual bill I received from Coldstream. 

Anyone can do the comparisons using their own assessment figures. Just click on the links below and you will get the property tax estimators developed by Councillor Spiers for Coldstream and the official tax estimator provided by the city of Vernon. Just type in the appropriate 2013 land values in both the 2012 and 2013 estimator. Do the same with the improvement figures and you will have the estimated taxes for Coldstream

Do the same with the Vernon tax estimator and you will get the figures you would be paying to Vernon had your property been located in the city.

Now you can compare the difference between the tax loads of the two jurisdictions. In the actual example provided below the total tax bill difference is $288.85 or 10.2%. The Municipal tax difference is the more revealing: the Vernon tax bill is $327.45 or 31.7% higher than that of Coldstream's.


Monday, October 28, 2013

News clip from the Morning Star and a reply.

It is very arrogant of a former city Councillor to tell the taxpayers of Coldstream that they should give up their chosen form of governance and join the City of Vernon. He should have learned from the debates of 2008 (see clips) that these debates do not work unless each one of the jurisdictions agree to proceed based on demonstrated, tangible benefits to each.

As a Coldstream resident I get the services I need: water from GVW, sewer services for which I pay the going rate to the city and the collection fees to Coldstream, I pay my share for recreation, culture etc.

My property taxes in 2013 were 10.25% lower than it would have been had my property been located in the city (that's about $290 in real figures).

You may think Vernon is over governed and that you have to take up with your Council. Coldstream is not over governed and tries to keep taxes at a level its taxpayers can afford. So do not covet our way of life from the outside. If you wish to join Coldstream you may purchase a property and move to Coldstream. Otherwise let us live as WE please!


Saturday, October 26, 2013

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Photo gallery - Tour of Beauty: Silver Star above the fog and nice and warm! - Debbie


Ground Breaking Set For Sports Venue - Kiss FM News

Ground Breaking Set For Sports Venue

Attention: open in a new window.
Sports facility concept planWork on the new sports facility next to Okanagan College in Coldstream is ready to proceed.

The Regional District of North Okanagan will hold a ground breaking ceremony Wednesday at 3:30 at the site.

Voters approved borrowing up to 7.5 million dollars for an Olympic sized running track, and natural turf and synthetic turf sports fields, back in April, by a margin of 52%.

Since then, contracts for design and project management have been awarded and studies to check for military ordinances and archeological items have been conducted on the site.

The facility will also be lighted and include change rooms and washrooms.

The college is leasing the land to the regional district for one dollar a year in a 40 year deal.

RDNO officials say the facility should be completed by the fall of 2014.

The Agricultural Land Commission has mandated construction be done by November 2014 as a condition of using farm land for the venue.


Monday, October 21, 2013

Amalgamation/Unification - | Daybreak South | Daybreak Southviews

CBC Radio produced some interviews this morning regarding Amalgamation/Unification of Greater Vernon. You may listen to the program at the above link.


News Clip from the Morning Star

It's been nearly two months since the Amalgamation-Unification Petition began and I have not seen any emails, have not had any phone calls advocating for the movement. However, it's nice to see the effort even for indicating that the status quo is fine with the overwhelming majority of taxpayers.


Huge GMO News ! - Ocean Robbins

It hasn't been a good week for Monsanto and the rest of the biotech industry.

Just three days ago, Mexico banned genetically engineered corn. Citing the risk of imminent harm to the environment, a Mexican judge ruled that, effective immediately, no genetically engineered corn can be planted in the country. This means that companies like Monsanto will no longer be allowed to plant or sell their corn within the country's borders.

At the same time, the County Council for the island of Kauai passed a law that mandates farms to disclose pesticide use and the presence of genetically modified crops. The bill also requires a 500-foot buffer zone near medical facilities, schools and homes -- among other locations.

And the big island of Hawaii County Council gave preliminary approval to a bill that prohibits open air cultivation, propagation, development or testing of genetically engineered crops or plants. The bill, which still needs further confirmation to become law, would also prohibit biotech companies from operating on the Big Island.

But perhaps the biggest bombshell of all is now unfolding in Washington state. The mail-in ballot state's voters are already weighing in on Initiative 522, which would mandate the labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Knowing full well that 93 percent of the American public supports GMO labeling, and that if one state passes it, many others are likely to follow, entrenched agribusiness interests are pulling out all the stops to try to squelch yet another state labeling effort.

This time, however, things aren't going quite as planned. On Wednesday, Washington state Attorney General Bob Feguson filed a lawsuit against the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA). The GMA, a lobby for the junk food industry, has been by far the largest donor to efforts to defeat the labeling initiative. The lawsuit alleges that the GMA illegally collected and spent more than $7 million while shielding the identity of its contributors.(More)


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Help wanted!

Janice Buick from  Allan Brooks Nature Centre, is requesting help from community members with their Yellow Fish Road Project.
Three or more adult volunteers are needed to help supervise groups of 6 elementary students who will be painting  yellow fish next to storm drains.
If you can help, please show up at Silver Star Elementary School at 10 am Wednesday October 23rd .
If you have questions please contact Janice:
o: 250.260.4227
d: 250-306-7945
Thanks for helping,
Louise Christie (SPrKL)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

RDNO sentencing delay - Castanet News

Vernon Judge Mayland McKimm held off on his sentencing of the Regional District of the North Okanagan Wednesday afternoon because of something he heard in the media.

The RDNO is awaiting to hear what financial penalty it will face after being found guilty of failing to provide potable water, allowing contamination of drinking water, introducing foreign matter into a well and operating a well in a manner to cause adverse impact in connection with the contamination of the Antwerp Springs water source in January 2010.

McKimm is frustrated and insulted by numerous media reports that suggest the RDNO does not take responsibility for its actions and continues to claim innocence in the case despite the guilty verdict.
The District of Coldstream has also maintained its innocence in the matter despite the fact it plead guilty to the charges.

In particular, McKimm says comments by RDNO Board Chair, Patrick Nichol in many media publications as well as the one he heard on the radio while driving home just two days after he gave the guilty verdict,  left him unsettled.

McKimm says Nicol and the RDNO continue to claim they have done nothing wrong and that they have somehow been disserved by the justice system.

“The comments I heard that day showed a contemptuous attitude towards the findings of the court and more importantly it may well reflect the motivations of the RDNO. This, along with a number of comments made during the trial about the district's sincere concern with respect to providing the district clean water shows a complete indifference from the district,” said McKimm.

"If I made a comment regarding our lack of responsibility in the case (which I don't know if I did entirely), I don't think that would be too unreasonable given were in a position of defense," claimed Patrick Nicol (more)


SPrKL Annual General Meeting


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

NORD Meeting - October 16, 2013


News Release - Interior Health

News Release - Interior Health
For Immediate Release 
Vernon lab collection site on the move

Interior Health’s Vernon Laboratory Blood Collection Site is on the move. Effective Monday October 21st, 2013 the Discovery Plaza lab collection site is relocating to the new Sterling Building at:

3210 25th Ave. Vernon
Second Floor- 205
(corner of Hwy. 97 and 25th Ave.)

The hours of operation will remain the same: Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Please note the Discovery Plaza lab will be closed Oct 17/18 to accommodate the move – thank you in advance for your patience.

For more information please call: 250-558-1242.


Coldstream Ratepayers News! All Coldstream residents are ratepayers!

The opinions expressed by "Coldstreamer" are strictly his own and do not represent the opinions of Coldstream Council!

Because I value your thoughtful opinions, I encourage you to add a comment to this discussion. Don't be offended if I edit your comments for clarity or to keep out questionable matters, however, and I may even delete off-topic comments.

Gyula Kiss;


We must protect our rights and freedom! (Photo courtesy of D. Gibson) Click on eagle to watch EAGLECAMS

About Me

My photo
I have been a resident of Coldstream since 1976. I have had 15 years of experience on Council, 3 years as Mayor. As a current Councillor I am working to achieve fair water and sewer rates and to ensure that taxpayers get fair treatment. The current direction regarding water supply is unsustainable and I am doing all I can to get the most cost effective water supply possible.