Sunday, January 31, 2016

Selected Morning Star Newsclips - In case you missed them.




Thursday, January 28, 2016

Monday, January 25, 2016

Letter to the Morning Star and a response.

In response to Mr Simon’s letter to the Morning Star let me assure him that the plant had no “major equipment malfunction”. There was a problem with the BC Hydro transformer that had been a point of contention by two disagreeing partners: GVWU and BC Hydro for some time. Had it been resolved earlier this problem would not have happened. 

There are all sorts of pumping needed to allow even DC water to be delivered to many of the customers. There was only an electrician needed to attend the MH problem. A stand by generator could have avoided the MH shut down. We have trained staff to do emergency services as part of their jobs. Any expense to rectify small problems like the one  we had on Boxing Day would be infinitesimal to the cost of supplying filtered water to hay fields and other agricultural crops even if we ignore the cost of the construction and operation costs of additional facilities to provide such filtered water. Kalamalka Lake and Okanagan Lake may eventually be invaded by mussels if we are not vigilant. GVWU already has made plans to eliminate the problem by these nasty organisms by including an extra pipe to the Kal intake extension so that chlorine could be injected into the lake at the intake discouraging any mussels from the neighbourhood.

Just to be accurate, the DC plant cost is closer to $30 M. Power is less expensive than the annual treatment costs at DCWTP. Furthermore, even today a lot of power is needed to distribute water to residents of higher elevations like the Predator Golf Course, Silver Star Foothills, the Rise, Turtle Mountain, etc. Contrary to Mr Simon’s statement we do have significant water rights on Okanagan Lake if we consider changing the point of diversion of our licenses from BX Creek, Deer/Coldstream Creek and Kalamalka Lake to Okanagan Lake. That would be a net zero transfer and with justification should be no difficulty of achieving it.

As far as the local group is concerned: they should be commended for getting involved in the future of their water supply just as you should be commended for voicing your opinion. The issues are not as simple as they appear to the casual observer. Some of us noted that during the election campaign many of the political aspirants who originally supported the Master Water Plan changed their position on their support of the referendum. They assured the electorate that they would vote against the referendum question. Obviously, even those intimately involved in the process were not totally sure that it was the right direction. That’s why they appointed the Stakeholders’ Advisory Committee (SAC). Unfortunately, only staff and Consultants are permitted to provide information to this Committee. Information they are given might be considered biased. No "opinion biased in the opposing side" (this writer) nor an independent expert were allowed to review the current plan and comment on it. Hopefully, despite these less than fair decisions by the majority of GVAC the SAC will make the right decision in the end.


Thursday, January 21, 2016

Readers write - We’ve been water boarded!

We’ve been water boarded!  Don’t believe me? Just check your recently mailed quarterly utilities invoice for Oct. 1, 2015 to Dec. 31, 2015.
Amnesty International says water boarding is torture. So does the United States Supreme Court. That’s why, when the CIA wants to water board prisoners, it keeps them outside America in Guantanamo Bay. But that’s physical water boarding; ours is fiscal and the torture is to our wallets.
Greater Vernon Water utility has refined their local technique of water boarding (with the rubber stamping connivance of RDNO political appointees) into an esoteric art form that gouges the pocketbooks of each and everyone of us.
In 2010, we were charged a base fee of $50.17 per quarter  that included up to 10 cubic meters of water at no additional charge. Our base fee then was in the upper quartile of normal municipal practice and the amount of water included  was in the lower quartile.  A bit pricey for what we got but still not totally out-of-whack with what other cities were doing.
Our latest base fee has jumped to $101.80 per quarter, it does not include a single drop of water and that is for a commodity that is absolutely essential for life. That’s $407.20 to Greater Vernon Water per annum for Sweet Fanny Adams. That is the fiscal water boarding you and I are being subjected to. It makes Greater Vernon Water unique. It puts us completely off the charts. It is unlikely that any other city in Canada  charges so much for so little. And, have you heard?  It isn’t going to stop ... our water utility has just asked for another 2% raise.
Speak up now or forever hold your piece. Shake off your voter complacency and become outspoken. Greater Vernon Water and their political enablers are counting on your lack of participation to let them serve their wants rather than our needs.
Are you going to continue letting them soak you for  millions to treat water to drinking quality standards then spray it on such low value crops as hay and silage corn? Are you going to stay mute when you see overhead crop irrigation occurring on windy or hot sunny days when most of it goes to waste? Well, if you do not speak up my voice will just be lost in the wilderness as was that of Coldstream Councillor Gyula Kiss.
Seems that with regard to water our plutocratic and politico mantra is to either ignore or give the squeaky wheel the boot.  That’s led to us being water boarded and why it is necessary for you and me to take action if we want it to stop. Defeating the water referendum was not sufficient.  We need to put a stop to the indecisive dithering and get a solution.
Juliette Cunningham and Jim Garlick preside over what happens to water. Make sure they hear your voice
 Jim Bodkin

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Monday, January 11, 2016

Latest news on Greater Vernon Advisory Committee!

Further to my earlier comments on GVAC issues here are the newest developments:

Above are the recently re-discovered Terms of Reference for the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee. As it turns out we have been carrying on business in contradiction of that Terms of Reference. Only two people were eligible to be on the GVAC and the RDNO Board of Directors. In Coldstreams' case it was only the appointed Director and his Alternate could sit on both bodies. Thus, effective today I am out of a job as the Director on GVAC and am only appointed as an alternate, in case the two appointees are not able to attend.

It appears that only Coldstream is affected by this strange rule. Four members of Vernon Council are eligible for Directors of RDNO each of whom are eligible for directorship on GVAC.

Another wrinkle of the RDNO rules is that neither the RDNO Director nor his alternate can advise Coldstream Council of any discussions or decisions made in camera at the RDNO in-camera meetings unless specifically authorized by the Board. 

So as a result of these rules I am afraid I cannot represent your interests on the GVAC. I can sit in at the meetings but I cannot vote unless one of the two Directors are absent.

I wanted to let all of you know before you hear it from the Media. I guess it is fair from RDNO's point of view but I am not so sure it is fair for Coldstream. It all depends on whose ox is being gored!



Selected Morning Star Newsclips - In case you missed them.




Saturday, January 9, 2016

Coldstream Council Meeting - January 11, 2016,100&pagemode=bookmarks


Local politician launches petition to give RCMP auxiliary officers a tax break

January 08, 2016 - 2:06 PM By Charlotte Helston INFO-TEL.CA
VERNON - A Vernon city Councillor is petitioning the federal government to get a tax credit for auxiliary police officers. The petition is posted on the Parliament of Canada website, and calls upon the government to extend the same credit to auxiliary constables — unarmed, unpaid, uniformed RCMP volunteers — as it does to certain other volunteers.

The petition, launched by Vernon councillor Bob Spiers, states "the previous government instituted a tax credit for Volunteer Firemen in 2011 and a similar tax treatment for Volunteer Search and Rescue in 2014."

To have a petition posted on the House of Commons e-petition website and eventually presented in the House of Commons, it must be sponsored by a Member of Parliament. North Okanagan-Shuswap MP Mel Arnold is the sponsor for the petition.

The petition will be open for signatures from Jan. 8 to May 7.

Readers are encouraged to sign the petition at this website. Auxiliary police officers put their life on line to help protect the rest of us and deserve some benefit for their sacrifices.



Thursday, January 7, 2016

GVAC Returns Leaders - (The Empire strikes back)

Monday, January 4, 2016

GVAC Agenda January 7, 2016

Note: Early budget approval requests, page 26!


Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year from both of us - Debbie and Gyula

Happy New Year!

That lake in the background is one of the two  best reservoirs in the country? 


Water source switched!

It is unfortunate that 2015 was such an terrible year for the Mission Hill water Treatment Plant. If not one thing another would force it's closure. Eventually, in 2016 we will all see the need of closing this unfortunate plant and switch over permanently to the "perfect" Duteau Creek water system. lol (It's sarcasm!).


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.