Tyaughton Lake – Gun Creek Road “No Firearms Discharge” Signs

Google Earth Image of the 8 sign locations

New “No Firearms Discharge” Signs

The Tyaughton Lake Ratepayers had previously asked the SLRD for updated signage with more signs for the area in key locations. This request was prior to me becoming the Area A Director. I was asked to help and working with the Tyaughton Lake and Gun Creek Road area ratepayers groups this year, a plan was created to install more and updated signage. The new signs have the updated No Firearm Discharge (NFD) zone , private properties highlighted and “You Are Here” icons. I want to thank in particular Mary Benson and Jim Blair for the work they did in making sure the locations and sign content was what the ratepayer groups wanted.

The new signs are all up now! I want to thank the SLRD Electoral Area Directors for approving the costs associated for the purchase and installation of the signs through the SLRD Area A Select Funds. I also want to thank the SLRD Staff and Contractor for all the help they have given to make this project come together and installed.

SLRD Area A “No Firearms Discharge” Bylaw

This is a link to the SLRD Area A Bylaw. SLRD Area A “No Firearms Discharge” Bylaw . As you will see, I have highlighted two of the main Exemptions that pertain to this Bylaw. One of them is that a licensed hunter can still hunt in the NFD zone but still has to be 100 meters from a dwelling as per the Hunting Regulations.

Tyaughton Lake-Gun Creek Road Final Signs

This link is to a PDF file of the final version of the signs, that are now installed. The large sign is 72″ wide by 48″ high and the rest of the signs are 24″ wide by 36″ high: Tyaughton Lake-Gun Creek Road Final NFD Signs . The image above is the large sign replacing the old outdated one.

Gun Lake Ratepayers “No Firearms Discharge” Signs

I have also worked with the Gun Lake Ratepayers Association as they have requested new NFD signage and as of this writing they are being manufactured. They more than likely now, will not be installed until next spring.

SLRD Area A Directors Report October 5, 2020

Hello everyone, this has definitely been a year for the books and we still have a number of months to go. What a year to start in politics! I am sure everyone at one point or another has been on a Zoom meeting! That has been my life for the past number of months and it will sure be nice to get back to face to face meetings at some point! I have been kept very busy by many requests and concerns but have managed in most part to keep up with everything going on in light of all the restrictions we have with COVID-19. We have done very well in our community as we have had no known cases of COVID-19, in the past number of months so hats off to everyone for doing their part!

This report is a bit lengthy, as time has not been on my side but will try to get more frequent blogs to you.

COVID-19 BRV Community Support Program:

The program has been up and running for almost 6 months now and is still working well. It was only planned for 2 months but due to the generosity of our community it is still going. This program has changed a bit and the Lillooet Foodbank now comes out to hand out large food hampers once or twice a month for the people receiving the groceries. You can donate to the program to keep it going by contacting the Lillooet Food Bank at foodbank@lfcs.ca. The mailing address for the Lillooet Friendship Center Foodbank that supports Gold Bridge is PO Box 2170-357 Main St. Lillooet BC V0K 1V0 if you want to send a cheque. If you want to donate, you must use the code word “Gold Bridge” so the funds go to this program. They also can supply you with a charitable donation Receipt on request. A big “Special Thank You” goes to the Lillooet Food Bank for supporting our community!

Hurley FSR Update:

The road had its initial grading late due to unforeseen circumstances and the grader operator did not have much road material to work with, as you may know if you drive it. Shortly after it was graded it deteriorated quickly, due to the heavy vehicle traffic on it. As with many other areas in the Province people wanted to get out of the populated areas and get out into areas such as ours. At the top of the Hurley I have seen the most amount of vehicles that I have ever seen in the past and I have counted well over 50 vehicles parked on a number of occasions on our travels over it! Others have seen up to 100! This was partly due to the closures of the Joffre Lakes Provincial Park and other Parks in the Sea to Sky Region due to COVID-19. The Forest Ministry was successful at securing extra funding of just over $100,000 for brushing, ditching, and finding more road surface material. These tasks were completed in the month of August. The funding came from the Forest Employment Program due to the decline in the forest industry.

At the Union of British Columbia Municipalities meetings we meet with the Cascades Forest District Manager and Ministry Staff. They said that there was limited budget for FSR road maintenance and that they prioritize roads that the public uses that have communities with the FSR roads being the only access in and out. The Hurley is not one of them as Road 40 is the main access to the valley year round. They have however committed to getting the traffic counts for the past ten years as they have 3 vehicles counters on the road. They also committed to see if they can find some funding streams for road bed material as it is desperately needed as we all know. Well as of this writing I have found out that after the UBCM Meeting they did find another $100,000 from the the same Forest Employment Program! The plan is too use two sets of excavators and graders both starting at the Hope Creek area and work from there. One back to the start of the Hurley on the Pemberton side and the other to the Gold Bridge side. They will use existing areas that they have taken road bed material from in the past, other location’s and also spread the piles that they created while doing the ditching. Hopefully this will be finished before the snow starts and that it will be in good shape for next years opening. Expected start date is after the Thanksgiving long weekend.

Road Safety:

There was a Facebook post regarding road safety and logging trucks on Road 40. I had communications with the Forest Company, Lillooet RCMP, and the Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement representative for our area. I shared the post and comments with them. The RCMP and CVSE both said that any safety related incidents should be reported to them. The person that saw the incident is the one to submit the report. They asked for accurate information with regards to time, location, direction of travel, vehicle and load description and complainant contact information. Without these details, it is very difficult for them to investigate and resolve any incident. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement representative said he is in constant contact with the Forest Company and the RCMP and takes action when required. You must drive very defensively on our roads and adhere to the posted slow down speeds and stay in your lane.

Wildlife:

We certainly have had our share of Wildlife issues this year in the valley. From a Moose being shot at the summit of the Hurley, to a Grizzly bear attack in the local BC Park, to sightings of Grizzly bears in our local communities, and to a Cougar attack in the Marshall Lake area. I wish the young boy a quick recovery from the injuries and that the rest of the children and adults that are recovering from this traumatizing Cougar event. With that please be aware of your surroundings and take all the necessary precautions when out and about in our neighborhoods and backcountry areas that we live and play in. Carry some form of communication device and bear spray on your body and practice using them. If out in the backcountry let someone know where you are going and expected time of arrival back.

Visitors to the Valley:

This year as mentioned in the Hurley update, we have had a lot of visitors to the valley. I have had numerous complaints regarding people camped on Crown Land and not practicing Leave no Trace principles and not being respectful of the communities. I have communicated with our Compliance and Enforcement officer and they have requested that if you see something to report it. Link to the Compliance and Enforcement RAPP Line info page: RAPP Line.

At a SLRD meeting I submitted a Director Report which read: I am requesting that the SLRD staff look into the costs and logistics of creating an educational video and signage regarding recreational users in the Electoral Areas of the SLRD. The main topics would be “respect rural neighborhoods, explore responsibly and Leave no Trace Principles”. This has been an issue throughout BC over the years but amplified this year due to COVID-19. The motion was approved and we will see if we can make this educational video happen.

Bralorne Sewer Project Update: taken from the SLRD Website posted on August 13th:

“The SLRD has recently completed 3 sanitary service connections (2 residential and the fire hall). The Request for Proposals process (for 16 sanitary service connections) did not result in the selection of a contractor for this work, and therefore a new Request for Proposals will be issued in the coming weeks and will have a start date of spring 2021. On August 10, 2020, the discharge permit for the new wastewater treatment system was issued by the Ministry of Environment (MOE) – this will enable the commissioning of the new system to proceed in accordance with MOE requirements.

SAVE THE DATE: The SLRD is planning a virtual Bralorne Sewer Community Meeting on October 7, 2020 at 6:30 p.m. (via Zoom).  (Additional meeting information will be released in the coming weeks).  To assist staff with preparing for this community meeting, please forward any questions about the Bralorne Sewer to utilities@slrd.bc.ca with the subject line “Bralorne Community Meeting” – if possible, please send questions by September 28, 2020 so that information can be included in the presentation materials to address these questions.

Next Steps:

The SLRD is in the process of establishing what the date of commissioning will be (this date is expected to be by the end of October).

Once the commissioning date is established, the SLRD will provide the Ministry of Environment with the required advance notice thereof.

By the end of September, the SLRD will issue a new Request for Proposals for 16 sanitary service connections with work to be undertaken in spring 2021;

On October 7, 2020, the SLRD will hold a virtual Bralorne Sewer community meeting (more information to follow);

In spring 2021 (after the 16 connections mentioned above is completed), the SLRD plans to decommission manholes and septic tanks that are no longer needed.”

Bralorne Main Street Repaving:

I have enquired regarding the paving of the Main Street in Bralorne and found out that the SLRD will have to pay for the portion of the road that was disturbed by the Sewer Project. I requested information to see if the Community Gas Tax Fund that is available to Area A could be used for this purpose. Due to the fact that the Bralorne Sewer project was funded by a Community Gas Tax Fund, may make it not eligible due to Stacking concerns. I finally got the answer this week and confirmation that we can use the Community Gas Tax Fund that is available to Area A. Some good news on this front. The SLRD is now working with MOTI on our percentage of costs for the repaving of the road. Stay tuned.

Other Initiatives that I have and am working on:

Worked with some of the Brett Creek residents on their dust issues due to the high logging truck traffic. We were successfully in obtaining an enhanced dust control program for the Brett Creek residential area on the Marshall Lake Road. This has been a long standing concern for the residents of this area.

The Bralorne Recreation Area – Sub Committee on their requested funding of just over $22,000. They required services to be performed by a Qualified Environmental Professional and a Cultural Sensitivity Assessor along with a License to Cut permit application. They also required services for Brushing and Clearing the small trees and brush above and below the existing old ski cabin. This request was approved at a SLRD Board of Directors Meeting.

Facilitated a BRVCA working group for a new BRVCA Society Bylaw and Policies that were approved at a recent BRVCA General Meeting. Thanks to the working group members Terri Smith, Christine Oliver, Jane Roberts, Debbie Demare and Benno Chapman. Special thanks goes to Carmen Stacey for her expertise and help with this initiative.

In 2019 the SLRD had a report done regarding Wildfire Risks in Area A. this is a link to the report: SLRD Area A Community Wildfire Protection Plan. I am looking into Fuel Mitigation projects for the Gold Bridge and Marshall Lake areas and hopefully have a meeting set up with the Cascades Forest District Manager in the near future along with a SLRD staff member.

Worked with Community Futures Sun Country regarding their application for a Regional Business Liaison position as it relates to COVID-19 recovery for businesses and organizations. They were a successful applicant and we now we have a representative for our valley. The representative will be in contact with local businesses and organization’s to help in their recovery from COVID-19.

At the SLRD Board of Directors meeting on July 22nd I found out that there was funding available for Bandwidth improvements from the Rural and Northern Communities “RNC” Infrastructure funding stream and it is funded by both the Provincial and Federal Governments. The application for the funding could either be a Local Government or a Not for Profit Society. I knew that Minto Communications was looking for funding to increase their bandwidth as they contacted me for leverage funding. I mentioned it at the SLRD July 22nd meeting and said that Minto was working with Telus for improved bandwidth. The funding program had it set up that if a Local Government submitted the request that it would be 100% funded and if it was a Not for Profit Society it would only be 75% funded. I requested that the SLRD staff look into the Minto bandwidth upgrade plan and see if it fit the program. The staff did and they prepared a Report for Decision for the Board of Directors meeting at their August 26th meeting. It was approved at that meeting, that the SLRD will submit the application. The next step is that the SLRD staff and Minto Communications will develop the funding application with help from the BRVCA grant writer if needed, for the RNC Funding Program deadline of October 22nd. Great work by everyone getting it to this point lets hope the application is approved!

I and the BRVCA Grant Writer have worked with the BRV Rod and Gun Club for a Grant in Aide request. The funding request was for $5,000 to have Cascades Environmental Resource Group facilitate activities and negotiations to secure a land tenure for a new shooting range. The Grant in Aide request was approved at the SLRD Electoral Area Directors meeting on September 2nd meeting.

I worked with the Tyaughton Lake, Gun Creek Road, Gun Lake Ratepayer groups on their requests for enhancement of their “No Firearms Discharge” signage as per SLRD Bylaw 1293-2013. I have engaged the SLRD staff, and they have been very helpful in this process. The ratepayers groups in total, have requested 2 large signs and 13 smaller signs that will be placed in the main access areas to their respective Bylaw zones. I had developed a Director Report to fund this project and it was approved at the SLRD Electoral Area Directors meeting on September 2nd meeting. Please click on this link as it really explains the bylaw well, as it relates to who can shoot in the Bylaw Zone: SLRD Area A “No Firearms Discharge Signs” Bylaw.

The Bridge River Valley Community Association requested funding for the upcoming 2021 year as follows: $5,250 from Electoral Area A Select Funds for a grant writer for Area A; and $1,250 from Electoral Area B Select Funds for a grant writer for Area B. This request was approved at a SLRD Board of Directors Meeting. This position has done an incredible amount of legwork for various organizations and is so important in finding funding opportunities for various projects throughout Area A and Area B.

Both SLRD Area A and B submitted the following Resolution: “Request that the SLRD apply for the 2021 NDIT Business Facade Improvement Program by the October 30, 2020 deadline date.” This request was approved at a SLRD Board of Directors Meeting. This funding will be up to $20,000 dollars and split amongst Area A and Area B. This is a yearly program for the Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDIT) that we can apply to. Have a look to their website to see what they have to offer in funding opportunities. Link: NDIT Website

The BRVCA submitted the following request: “Bridge River Valley Community Association requests funding of up to $12,500 to move forward with the restoration of the Bralorne Pioneer Mines Building where plans are in place to relocate the Bralorne Pioneer Museum” this was approved at a SLRD Board of Directors Meeting.

The LaJoie Lake (Little Gun Lake) Residents Association requested funding for a Scientific Research Project to determine the causes of the deleterious changes in the lake. I worked with the Association and they have now secured the help of the BC Conservation Foundation to administer the program. Dr. Ken Ashley from BCIT will interview prospective students to find a suitable candidate for the project and will work with the student on a lake restoration plan as part of a Master of Science thesis in the BCIT and Simon Fraser University Graduate Program in Ecological Restoration. The costs have risen from the initial Association’s request but with help from the BRVCA Grant Writer, they now have a draft request assembled targeting other funding sourcing to supplement the SLRD request. The funding request will be finalized in September and should come to the SLRD Electoral Area Directors meeting for their October 14th meeting. This is a great group to work with and I have learned a lot through this process.

I have had a number of constituents come to me with concerns regarding the Gun Lake Boat Launch. The BRVCA Boat Launch Committee will be having a meeting to review the concerns and come up with a plan to alleviate them.

Some highlights and lowlights from the Ministers, BC Hydro, and Cascades Forest District meetings that were held before the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) Annual General Meeting:

I asked the question regarding the paving or resurfacing of the gravel sections on Road 40. The answer was that Road 40 gravel sections will not get paved as they prefer them to be gravel but will get capped with new compacted gravel. Total costs are around $400,000 and they will be using 10,000 cubic meters of road bed material. This work has been delayed due to the work involved in clean up from the major rain storm we had that caused all of the mud slides on the Road 40. It is now expected to start near the end of October.

I posed a question for more Engineered Controls to limit rock fall onto Road 40 to Minister Claire Trevena and she stated that the road was safe to travel and is closed when it was dangerous to travel. I used the example of the tractor trailer truck that had a huge boulder land on the cab in the Bridge Canyon! There were no commitments made at this meeting. I will continue pursuing this issue and look at incremental improvements, as was done on the slide just before Bralorne with the concrete blocks.

We asked the question that secondary roads such as the roads around Gun Lake be lowered from the current speed limit of 80 km/hr for various safety reasons. The answer we received was a no, that they do not do it unless it is a community such as Gold Bridge or Bralorne. It was not the answer we were looking for but I will continue pursuing this.

With regards to public recreation that has been an issue and that has been exasperated with COVID-19, the province is looking into adding a Guardian Program to the upcoming Budget. This program would put boots on the ground to help with concerns that rural areas have raised regarding people not respecting the communities, environment and leave not trace principles. I will be contacting our MLA and seeking support for this program for our area after the upcoming Provincial election.

BC Hydro agreed to hold Community meetings with regards to their operations that relate to our area. The BRVCA Economic Development Committee will be sending out a Survey to see the interest and what the community would like to see at these meetings.

BC Hydro will work at better communications as it relates to planned and unplanned outage communications. I have requested that they put more accurate information that reflects the many communities in the valley and which areas are affected with the outages.

Summary:

As you can see it was a busy time and there is a lot more behind the scenes with individual constituent concerns and issues that I have and am still dealing with. There are more initiatives that I am working on and hopefully they will come to fruition, so I can share them on my next blog. I have enjoyed this time as your elected official and look forward to helping where ever I can.

Stay safe and be well,

Sal

Road 40 and Mission Mountain Road – Gravel Sections Resurfacing

This is good news that I found out at a Minister meeting this week through the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM), Minister meetings. The gravel sections of Road 40 and the Mission Mountain Road will be resurfaced starting next week! I had asked regarding paving or resurfacing Road 40’s gravel sections with Minister Claire Trevena of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure and she told us about this project. I reached out to our District Manager and got the reply below.

“Dawson Road Maintenance (DRM) will be undertaking the resurfacing along Road 40, with works scheduled to commence on or about Sept. 21st.. The crushed material being placed originates from a stockpile that the Ministry produced last winter at Camoo Pit, located east of Terzaghi.

DRM is delivering the works through the Quantified plan of the Maintenance Contract. The Stockpile was produced last fiscal and funded through the Ministry’s rehab. program. Total costs for production and placement will be in excess of $400,000. We expect the works to take a minimum of 2 weeks to undertake and will be dependent on weather, equipment performance etc. The volume of material to be placed is actually in excess of 10,000 m3.

Placement will be undertaken with DRM’s resurfacing fleet as well as a grader, water truck etc. and a smooth drum roller. “

If you have any questions you can contact me at: saldemare27@gmail.com

SLRD Area A Directors Report-May 24 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We have all now been affected by COVID-19 for a number of months. The Province has implemented a slow approach back to some form of normalcy. They have initiated a Restart Plan with a 4 Phase approach. As of this writing we are at Phase 2 and as of June 1st we will be moving forward to Phase 3. All businesses and industries have to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan. These Safety Plans are critical for all businesses and industries to help the employee’s, guests, visitors, and shoppers be safe while the COVID-19 is still infectious. The links provided have many details.

We are all in this together. Remember to stay calm, be kind, and courteous to each other so that we can get through this Pandemic in the most positive way that we can.

BRV COVID-19 Community Support Program

In April a group of us had worked on a COVID-19 BRV Community Support Program. The Lillooet Food Bank and the Valley Hardware and Grocery have come together to facilitate the program. The program is intended to provide groceries to full-time residents of the Bridge River Valley who need assistance during this very difficult time via a weekly coupon system. If you need assistance during these times and want to register for the program or want to donate to this program please contact the Lillooet Food Bank at foodbank@lfcs.ca. If you want to donate, you must use the code word “Gold Bridge” so the funds go to this program. I want to thank everyone that helped to get this program off the ground but especially to the Lillooet Food Bank and the Valley Hardware and Grocery as without their involvement this may have not happened.

The program has been up and running and is working well. The Lillooet Food Bank was at the Gold Bridge Community Resource Building giving out initial food hampers and taking registrations twice during the month of April.

The program has received donations from various individuals and organizations and I want to thank them for their commitment to this program as it is greatly appreciated. The Lillooet Food Bank put in a Grant in Aide request for $2,500 for the program to the SLRD Electoral Area Directors and it was approved at their May meeting. This program will continue as long as there is funding for it. We are all in this together and every donation will help no matter how big or small.

Tree Planting in the Bridge River Valley

I have built very good relationships with our St’at’imc neighbors over the years. I had two separate e-mails sent to me by two different St’at’imc neighbors regarding tree planting contracts that were planned for our area. The SLRD and I are not on any resource based referrals from the government so we never knew about these planned tree planting contracts. I have thanked my St’at’imc neighbors for reaching out to us. Since I found out, I have educated myself on the new WorkSafeBC Forestry Regulations regarding COVID-19 and the Provincial Health Officer Order on Industrial Camps. They are very strict and the companies have a lot of procedures to follow. A SLRD Emergency Operations Center staff and I then had communications with two contractors that have a total of three contracts issued to them. There are a total of just over 1.5 million trees to be planted in our area between them. After reviewing their COVID-19 Safety Plans we felt comfortable that the safety of the workers and our community members was paramount in their plans.

The Ministry after we had already agreed to the contractors plans, held meetings at the request of the Lillooet Tribal Council (LTC) with the forest licensees, contractor and myself representing SLRD Area A as the LTC had concerns. We had a couple of meetings and the LTC asked for a few conditions. They finally presented their findings at the LTC Chiefs Meeting and the tree planting plans were approved. One of conditions was to have weekly meetings with the all that were at the Ministry meetings. The meetings are intended for updates on their plans and if any issues have arisen. So far everything is running smoothly. It is nice to see trees being planted and in a safe manner for all concerned. They are being planted throughout our valley and they should be finished by the end of June. This is BC’s biggest tree planting year ever with a total of 310 million seedlings to be planted!

Funding Requests

I have worked with many different organizations in the short while that I have been the Director, regarding projects and funding requests. I had to create a spread sheet so I could keep track of what was anticipated, in progress, waiting for approval, and approved. I had to do this as the SLRD Select funds are limited and I needed to make sure there were funds available for the various organizations requests. I have already started a sheet for 2021.

Link to the Select Fund Spreadsheet for 2020: Select Fund Spreadsheet for 2020

These are some of the projects that I have been engaged in and supporting:

  • Bralorne Ball Diamond new dugout, cook shack stoves, and porta potty screening.
  • Bralorne Recreation Area Phase 1 contractor “Expression of Interest’s”.
  • BRV Rod and Gun Club new shooting range location. Funding of a contractor for a Land Tenure Application.
  • Additional and new “No Firearm Discharge” signs for various communities in our valley.
  • LaJoie Lake “Environmental Study”. Project will be postponed to 2021.
  • Lillooet Food Bank “BRV COVID-19 Community Support Program”.
  • Gold Bridge Community Club “Seniors Lunch’s”. Extra Funding if we can get it moving forward this year due to COVID-19.
  • Gold Bridge and Marshall Lake Ratepayers becoming legal organization’s with seed funding.
  • The Bralorne Church downstairs washroom repairs. This was funded last year but an Expression of Interest was responded to this spring and the work should commence shortly. 

I have also worked with the SLRD staff, SLRD Area B Director, the BRVCA and the Grant Writer to implement a process for making applications for funding requests. It was important to standardize on the process so that it was fair and equal for all the various organizations in our valley and that the Directors were kept informed on any applications.

Link to the Draft Form as it still needs approval from the SLRD as they are funded for this position by NDIT: SLRD Grant Writer Form Draft

Other Tasks I am Engaged In

  • Proposed logging in the Marshal Lake area.
  • Proposed logging just north of Tyaughton Lake.
  • I had a request by a constituent regarding the status and rezoning of a land parcel and process.
  • I had a request by a constituent for contact info regarding an Environmental concern due to mining activities.
  • I am also working with the BRVCA Gun Lake Boat Launch Committee and Ministries on the legal status of the Gun Lake boat launch dock and next steps as it was damaged this winter due to ice movement. More details to come.

Hurley Forest Service Road

I had numerous communications with constituents regarding the opening of the Hurley this spring. Some wanted it not to be plowed but most others wanted it plowed. They had various reasons for their viewpoint. I worked with the Ministry representative in charge and it was decided to try to open it for the May long weekend. The Avalanche Technician finally gave the Ministry the go ahead but that did not give the Contractor enough time to open it before the start of the May long weekend. This was the hardest snow conditions to plow in 20 years due hard packed snow and ice near the summit. As it turned out the contractor had a number of mechanical issues and then had an incident where he had to take time off. We wish him a speedy recovery. Another machine has been brought up to finish the opening of the road. There has been a grader working up the Hurley from the Pemberton side, while the plowing was happening.

I had discussions with the Ministry representative and he has put in an additional funding request for sight line brushing, ditching, and developing any/all gravel sources so that it can be utilized by the grader for the surfacing. The decision should come mid June and hope it is approved. We also discussed an issue with one of the bridges that several people have had close calls on due to the lack of visibility with oncoming traffic. I will be taking pictures and coordinates so we can review the issues associated with it.

Remember to drive slowly and safely where equipment is working, for the safety of the operator and yourself.

Link to I Survived the Hurley website updates: Hurley Road Updates

Bralorne Sewer Project

I have had some questions by some Bralorne constituent’s and the Bralorne Community Advisory Committee (BCAC) Chair on the status of the Bralorne sewer project. The three previous SLRD Director’s were engaged in the project and process and now I am now the fourth Director to be engaged in this project as it still is not complete. It has been hard to come up to speed on it as the SLRD staff have been very busy due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Most of the staff are working from home as are many organizations. I have read what I can on the SLRD Website regarding the project but some of the questions require more detail than is on the website. I have replied to some of the questions once I receive details form the SLRD staff. The SLRD Chair has also responded to the BCAC Chairs request in an e-mail. The SLRD Chair has committed to a community meeting to review the status of the project and to take questions. There will be the SLRD Chair, the new Director of Environmental Services, SLRD staff and myself at the meeting. This meeting will be scheduled once the Chair confirms that the meeting can be held safely due to the COVID-19. If anyone has any questions or concerns please feel free to contact me either by phone or e-mail and I will try to get answers for them.

Link to SLRD Bralorne Sewer Upgrade Project (Note: there is a new “Update” posted on May 15): Bralorne Sewer Upgrade.

Link to a BRVCA post that was requested by the BCAC Chair to have posted regarding the SLRD Chairs response to a request: BCAC Chair and SLRD Chairs Response

Personal Concerns

Prior to me deciding to seek nomination in the By Election for the SLRD Area A Directors position there was a rumour circulating that I was receiving money for the volunteer work that I was doing for the BRVCA and especially the Trail Committee. I found that rumour to be very disheartening and misinformed. I had put many volunteer hours into the organization and donated my skills in many forms. I helped plan many projects and I worked alongside many contractors and employee’s that were getting paid while I volunteered my time. I am sure the many contractors and employees know who they are. The BRVCA did not have a credit card until recently and I used my credit card for many purchases for the BRVCA and I traveled to purchase some of the items. I put in for reimbursements as per policy. While the Chair of the Trails Committee I volunteered for many individuals, groups and organizations. They wanted to pay me but I declined the offers, but asked them to make a donation to the Trail Committee. In total over the years I helped with donations from my volunteer work to the Trail Committee, a total of well over $3,000. The pig roasts were my favorite for sure! I also donated to the BRVCA a projector and a projector screen for the office. This was to facilitate more effective meetings by the Board and the Committees. I donated my time and my John Deere track loader at the initial stages of the Haylmore Heritage site clean-up and the creation of the parking lot. The list of what I volunteered for and helped is too long to list but I am sure you get the idea.

With all that said in January of this year I decided to get the BRVCA to do up a letter and attach the last few years of the transactions that I was reimbursed for. I intend to be open and transparent and if you hear any rumours to contact me so that I can respond in a transparent and public way.

Link to letter: BRVCA Letter and Transactions

Since I was elected I secured a Conflict of Interest legal opinion in my role as a SLRD Director and I am abiding by the opinion.

This community has many needs as we are an underdog and we need many hands working on addressing those needs. It’s time to stop the rumor and innuendo tactics and start working in a co-operative manner in the best interests of our community.

Everyone stay safe and be well.

SLRD Area A Directors Report

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Local Information:

Hello everyone I hope everyone is well and staying safe. I want to take this time to talk about Social Distancing as it is imperative that we do this to stop the spread of the COVID-19. However it does not mean that we can’t Social Communicate from a distance with family, friends and neighbors. We can message them, have online video communications, share information and pictures etc. on Facebook, and most importantly there maybe people that do not use these technologies so a phone call to them just for a chat is so important in these difficult times. I have a few people that I will be phoning in the next few days and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

We are all in this together and it is imperative that we stay calm, be kind, and courteous to each other so that we can get through this Pandemic in the most positive way that we can.

I also want to thank everyone that is still out there working for us in our local community such as staff at BC Ambulance Service, Valley Hardware and Groceries, Canada Post, SLRD Transfer Station, SLRD Water and Sewer Contractor, Dawson Road Maintenance, Cayuse Flats Transportation, Bridge River Valley Community Association, and Minto Communications. If I have missed anyone my apologies.

We currently have a number of people in self isolation in our community for various reasons. Our BC Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry says it is imperative that you treat everyone you see as if they have the COVID-19. The reason for this is so that the COVID-19 is not transmitted and to stop the spread of it. It is key to practice Social Distancing (Physical Distancing) of 2 metres or 6 feet, Disinfecting and Hand Washing as you never know where COVID-19 is.

The following is the status of some of our services in our community and all of these services are taking precautions for the safety of yourself and their staff:

  • The Valley Hardware and Groceries store has in place that only 2 people are allowed in the store at one time. Line up outside and keep 2 meters or 6’ apart until you are allowed into the building. Signs are posted outside. If you call in and give them your credit card number they will shop for you and arrange a pick up spot.
    • Operating hours are as of now:
      • Monday and Thursday 10:00am – 12:00pm and 1:00pm – 5:30pm. Note that these are delivery days and it will be closed during deliveries.
      • Wednesday 1:00pm – 5:30pm.
      • Saturday 10:00am – 12:00pm and 1:00pm – 5:30pm.
  • The Post Office is open and on its regular operating hours. Only one person is allowed in the building at one time. Line up outside and keep 2 meters or 6’ apart until you are allowed into the building. Signs are posted outside.
  • The Transfer Station is open and on its regular operating hours. If there is a line up stay in your vehicle until it is your turn to dispose of your materials.
  • The Gold Bridge Community Resource Building is closed and staff are working remotely. There is a locked mail box in the entrance area, if you have something to drop off. It is looked at regularly.
  • The Library is closed.
  • The Gold Bridge Community Club and Gym are closed.
  • The Bralorne Pub is closed.
  • The Gold Bridge Hotel’s, Cafe and Pub are closed other than off sales.
  • I also want to say that here seems to be an influx of people in and around 2:00 pm at our local services especially on Monday’s and Thursday’s at our local store, post office and transfer station. Try to see if you can limit the number of trips (maybe once a week or even every 2 weeks) to these services and also to come at varying times so we do not get congestions at any one of the services. This will help with exposures to the COVID-19.

Director’s Update:

I have been busy as you can imagine since I was elected. The first thing I had on my plate was the SLRD 2020 Financial Plan as I came in at the tail end of the process and had to learn it to make decisions that were required. I have attended many meetings since I was elected and appointed to a number of different committees that also have regularly scheduled meetings. I am learning what is required for all of these meetings and for one of the last meetings had well over 1,000 pages of reading material to go through! I have had a number of local issues that constituents have wanted me to look into and have done some and have others on my to-do list. Then throw in the COVID-19 Pandemic and here we are!

I have meet with the Dawson Road Maintenance Quality Manager and Local Supervisor and will continue to meet with them monthly. If you have any road maintenance comments, concerns, suggestions or compliments please feel free to let me know as I will relay the messages.

I have had my first initial meeting with the Acting RCMP Sargent in Lillooet and will continue those meetings throughout my term.

I have had communications and will support a Gold Bridge Community Ratepayer Group being formed so that they can have a voice and be able to receive funding for various initiatives.

The SLRD had a Community Wildfire Protection Plan for Area A completed. I have reviewed the plan and talked to Bruce Morrow who helped develop the plan. I will be looking into what it will take to implement a Prescription Plan for the community that is at most risk for a wildfire. The funding for these Prescriptions has changed a lot in the past couple of years so will take some research to make it all happen.

There may be a need for a Food Sustainability (Food Bank or similar) program for our valley and I have been working on this initiative with others in our community and the SLRD.

There is a need for a Cayuse Flats Transportation facility for deliveries that are not related to the Post Office and there is a group working on a solution and I am engaged in this initiative.

I have had a number of Grant in Aide Requests that have been sent to the SLRD, to be put on an upcoming Meeting Agenda for approval.

I also have an ever growing to-do list and have to prioritise them to make sure the most important ones are dealt with.

Everyone stay safe and practice Social Distancing (Physical Distancing) of 2 metres or 6 feet, Disinfecting and Hand Washing.

Coronavirus COVID-19) Information

This Blog is all related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic with links to Government information.

It is very important that we all do our part for the prevention of catching or transmitting the virus.

The following Government links have a lot of information so please read for accurate information. These links are regularly updated so you can always be kept informed on the latest news related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The following links are related to the Federal and Provincial Government COVID-19 response:

Remember to do the following from the information obtained in the links provided:

  • Practice Social Distancing
  • Sterilizing
  • Hand Washing

SLRD Area A Director By Election

This election for the SLRD Area A Director’s position was the first that had significant number of voters from every area in the valley that participated in it. I had support from every area of the valley, Bralorne, Gold Bridge, Gun Lake, Gun Creek Road, Tyaughton Lake, and Marshall Lake. There were 207 ballots cast and that was a great turn out!

I congratulate Steve Oakley on a very well run campaign and thank him for running. I also sent an e-mail to Steve and next time I see him I will do it in person.

The last 2 elections we actually have had candidates run. This is a very positive thing for the community.

I want to thank everyone for voting, supporting and volunteering for either candidate. It was democracy in action and that is a good thing.

I am off to my first Board Meeting next week and will continue to update via this Blog.