Sunday, June 28, 2015

Morning Star Newsclips - In case you missed them.



Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Morning Star Newsclips - In case you missed them.


It is surprising that my comments  “Who is directing it (the MWP)? It looks like staff is directing it.” created so much controversy. Does anyone disagree with that statement?
Staff was hired to direct the MWP. That's what they are getting paid for. Staff write terms of references to hire consultants, staff gather information and provide it to politicians, they are the ones who make recommendations etc. Consultants are the extension of staff and staff is responsible for the accuracy and completeness of the consultants information. Politicians have to make decisions based on the information and recommendations staff provide to them
However, since politicians have to make decisions based on that information it must be complete, accurate, factual, up to date, non-selective and unbiased. Withholding pertinent information, whether it is due to lack of knowledge or otherwise, is not tolerable. This is where we have our differences.
In the 2002 MWP Okanagan Lake was omitted as a water supply source. Inquiring minds were told that the reason for this omission was due to lack of water licenses on Okanagan Lake. This was true as far as it went. The fact that GVW had ample water licenses on tributaries to Okanagan Lake and that the Water Act had provisions that would allow transfer of Point of Diversion (POD) of existing water licenses was not provided by neither the consultants nor staff. Had this information been provided and acted upon the direction and cost of the MWP could have been a lot different.
Similarly, staff reported that there was insufficient water license capacity in Kalamalka Lake. The possible transfer of POD from Deer Creek/Coldstream Creek was again not revealed to the politicians. Knowledge of that possibility could have changed decisions.
In fact, the possibility of transferring POD from Duteau Creek to Kalamalka Lake was never mentioned. The Water act allows minor transfers (up to 10 cubic meters per second) between watersheds.
If any of those facts were considered by staff and the political reps Duteau Creek would never have needed altering. It could have been reassigned to raw agriculture water only as it used to be prior to 1970.
IHA was blamed for the huge expenditure in a very short time. IHA clarified their position recently (the presentation was released from in-camera to general information). Their position was that GVWU develop a plan with timelines for their approval. How we do it is our choice. If they do not like it they will make suggestions. We opted for the most expensive, most complicated plan, leaving us with no room to negotiate.
There are many other examples I could list. I am not blaming the current staff for all of the problems. However, we must work together to see how we can remedy the existing situation. We are now aware of previous information deficiencies, provided in the preparation of the MWP. Excessive water rates are the issue. The politicians need to step into their primary role, which is to ensure that the tax payers are represented first and foremost, while balancing their secondary role which is to maintain a good working relationship with staff at the RDNO. Whatever plan we develop we must convince the public to approve funding for it.
Most people resent the fact that they pay huge water bills even with low usage. They also face stringent restrictions on when and how they can use their water while they watch big guns spray the same expensive water on hay fields and other agricultural crops at any time, any day  and pay pittance for it. That resentment is not going to improve with adding future expensive treatment to the mixed domestic/agriculture water. This situation would remain a constant point of discontent for the domestic customers as their rates keep climbing.


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Summer is the Time for Kids to “Build It!” at the Library


June 17, 2015
For Immediate Release

“Build It!” is the theme of this year’s Summer Reading Club at Okanagan Regional Library (ORL) branches in the North Okanagan. All five library locations in the region – Vernon, Cherryville, Lumby, Armstrong, and Enderby – have planned free special events and programs throughout the summer to ensure school-aged children improve their literacy skills and have fun while on holiday.

Summer Reading Club is an annual focus of the ORL regional library system, with support from the BC Library Association, the Ministry of Education and local Friends of the Library groups.

Local librarians have witnessed first-hand the difference summer reading can make in a young reader’s life.

“By incorporating literacy into fun hands-on activities we make reading enjoyable.  Summer Reading Club give kids a chance to learn at their own pace and connect with other kids who share their interests”, explains Stephanie Vollick, Children’s Librarian at the ORL’s Vernon Branch. “Participating in reading challenges and earning medals helps build their confidence with reading.”
Each summer a province-wide theme for the Reading Club is chosen with activities and booklists relating to the theme. For 2015, illustrator, animator and game designer Shayne Letain created the “Built It!” theme to encourage active participation and creativity from program participants. Games, reading lists, colouring pages and construction projects that can be done at home can be found on the BC Summer Reading Club website at

Okanagan-based magician Leif David, known to many as “Ali K. Zam”, created a special new 45-minute magic show based on the “Build It!” theme and will tour all 29 ORL branches over the summer beginning on June 23 in Summerland.

To join Summer Reading Club, check with your local library branch for detailed registration information and activity dates. Every branch has reading logs to track children’s reading activity with prizes for completion. Basic information is as follows:

Vernon Branch has many Summer Reading Club activities throughout the summer for ages 5-8 and 9-13, while continuing StoryTime for under 3’s and special programming for teens. Registration for each Summer Reading Club event opens two weeks prior to the event date; check their branch page for details. Vernon’s launch party is on July 3.

Lumby’s Summer Reading Club registration is open now with 4 special programs on July 9, 23, August 13 and 27. Space is limited at certain events so register early.

Cherryville Branch is hosting two special events on July 9 and 16; visit the branch for details.

Enderby Branch is hosting weekly events from June 27 – August 12. Registration is open and required; more details at on the website.

Armstrong Branch’s Summer Reading Club registration opens June 23, with weekly programs between July 4 – August 7, contests and prizes.

For more details, check

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Media Inquiries:
Marla O’Brien
Public Relations/Fundraising Manager
Okanagan Regional Library


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Man in custody after Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park fire

posted Jun 13, 2015 at 4:00 PM

A suspect has been arrested after a fire in Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park.

On Friday at about 9:25 p.m., the RCMP received a report of a fire in the park near Cosens Bay.

"A male suspect found in the area of the fire was detained by firefighters who had responded to fight the fire," said Gord Molendyk, with the RCMP.

At one point, it was reported the flames were about 20 feet high and covered an area of 20 feet by 60 feet.

"Upon arrival, we found an area in a steep portion of the park with four to five citizens actioning the fire from the lake side. Without there quick action it would have been a different outcome," said Dave Sturgeon, Coldstream fire chief .

"I would like to express my sincere gratitude for their help in the efforts as our biggest challenge was gaining access to the site."

B.C. Forestry firefighters also responded to the scene.

The 24-year-old suspect remains in custody and the investigation continues.


Monday, June 8, 2015

Sunday, June 7, 2015

GVAC Special Meeting June 11, 2015 

Please note the starting time at 9:00 AM not 8:00 AM 


GVAC Special Meeting June 10, 2015


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

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

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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.