Today I wrote a letter to council about their proposed water meters bylaw. I don’t take this step lightly, Councillors should know that if someone writes them a letter, they’ve thought long and hard about not writing it first.
To the Councillors and Mayor of the City of Castlegar
Re: Proposed Water Meter Bylaw
The City of Castlegar has disregarded points raised in public forums, petitions and letters and rather than answering these questions and comments in an intelligent manner, (after all, the city is the one who started the conversation by holding a public forum), it appears that residents are left feeling frustrated and ignored as the city plows ahead with it’s decision to implement a water meters bylaw.
I am a Civil Engineer with seven years experience in the design of municipal and land development design and construction, and have worked with some of the leading experts in water management and water metering in Australia. A decision to change the infrastructure funding program and method of billing cannot be taken lightly. The current fixed fee, adjusted annually water funding program, works well in a community of this size, particularly with a readily available water supply. The research conducted by city staff made some serious assumptions about the availability of water, and about the cost of maintaining the infrastructure that is currently within the city.
I read some quotes in the Castlegar News a couple of weeks back that were disturbing:
With the misconception that there is a lot of water and is a resource that some people believe will never run out, Councillor Deb McIntosh says that “As long as there?s a river going through Castlegar, they’re never going to believe that there’s a water shortage.”
“We actually receive less money from it, and I think the meter system will save people some money, and some water,” said Councillor Gordon Turner. “It’s a move we have to make.”
Please consider the following questions: