Monday, February 26, 2024

Will Petition on Water Bill charges make for a mention at Council tonight

There may be a larger audience than usual for tonight's final Public Council Session for February,

That as proponents of an online petition currently active in the community calling for the suspension of the water tax element of the recently delivered utility bills, will likely be watching tonight's Council session to see if their initiative will rate a mention by either Mayor Pond or any of the Council members.

As we outlined last week, the petition drive was launched following a social media reminder from the City related to the recently delivered Utility Bills.

The focus for the petition creator and those who have signed on so far, one that as the city's water supply has been subjected to frequent advisories and Boil Water Notices, that residents should not be paying taxes for a service that they cannot fully enjoy with confidence

The petition which was created on February 20th, began with a simple goal of 100 signatures which was quickly met. 

Since then the creators have expanded that call for signatures to 500, though the momentum has slowed in recent days with 285 signatures noted as of this morning.

At the time of the creation of the petition, some of the commentary reflected some of the frustrations in the community when it comes to the ongoing water issues.

Should they follow up on that theme by attending the Council session tonight in person, it will be interesting to see if Council will allow for them to speak at the session tonight, the public comment period one normally limited to items listed on the Agenda.

Residents may however, hear some positive news on the path towards the city's infrastructure woes at the session tonight. 

Tthe Council session marks the first public gathering for Mayor Pond to provide some thoughts towards the announcement in the BC Budget last week of some success for the Resource Benefits Alliance.

The funding to be delivered to the 21 communities of the Northwest noted by the Province as money to be earmarked for infrastructure use.

"To support economic growth and development, $250 million over five years will support the 21 local governments that make up the Northwest BC Resource Benefits Alliance. 

These communities are primarily rural and remote with small populations, but are relied upon to support an influx of new industry and workers. 

Funding will support planning and construction of municipal infrastructure, such as roads, water sewer and other community facilities needed to create livable communities." -- BC Finance Minister Katrine Conroy during the BC Budget presentation on Thursday

More notes on tonight's Council Session can be reviewed through our Council Preview here.


  1. I'm pretty sure that during the boil water advisories the petitioners used city water to flush their toilets and for some other things, so no, the water charge should not be cancelled. The city has been raising infrastructure money from various sources, which is mostly money that originates from other parts of the province and country. We should be paying our share.

  2. There has been ongoing work to fix our water for years now, it's a huge expense and covers every aspect from the lake all the way to our taps. It will continue for years to come. How are they going to pay for the ongoing upgrades if they have no tax dollars coming in? The more money gets thrown at it, the faster it will be completed. This petition is so short sighted.