Quathiaski Cove Landing Pub owner Joe Duprey leads ratepayer protest over onerous sewer rate hikes.

Quadra sewer users want onerous rates rolled back

Increases are “totally ridiculous” and the SRD has “totally mismanaged the system”

A group of Quathiaski Cove ratepayers on Quadra Island has asked the Strathcona Regional District (SRD) to rollback onerous sewer system charges they say they can’t afford.

In one year charges for the 101 property owners hooked up to the sewer system have skyrocketed. The basic residential charge has gone from $299 in 2011 to $692. The basic commercial rate has increased from $1,196 to $2,769. And, the school rate has soared from $7,774 to $17,997.

Quathiaski Cove Landing Pub owner Joe Duprey, who is paying more than $3,400 to flush his toilets, says the increases are “totally ridiculous” and the SRD has “totally mismanaged the system.”

On Friday Duprey and eight of his fellow ratepayers met with the SRD Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Brian Reardon and placed several demands on the table including a rollback of the increases.

Reardon said the meeting was “very productive,” but a rollback is “not possible” because the sewer rates are set in bylaws approved by the board. “This was the first of a few meetings that will be needed moving forward. We are reviewing the list of requests,” the CAO said.

Other ratepayer demands include: An updated comparative list of other sewer charges in B.C.; an explanation from the SRD directors that voted for the new charges; an audit of the current budget related to the 2012 taxes; an audit of sewer repairs and maintenance performed by the SRD since 2008; and, the formation of a joint SRD and ratepayers committee to find a solution.

“We have the most expensive sewer system in B.C. We simply cannot afford to pay these increased rates and keep our heads above water,” Duprey told the Mirror.

The pub owner said a petition is being circulated amongst system users to support the protest.

“A number of our neighbours have lost all confidence in this form of government, but are afraid to come forward for fear of reprisals.,” he said.

The system, originally private, was sold to the Comox Strathcona Regional District (CSRD) 12 years ago for $1. Two years later the CSRD implemented what was supposed to be a one-time only rate increase.

“The (reconstituted) SRD took over this asset in 2008 and has stated it has no obligation to live up to the CSRD commitment,” Duprey said.

The ratepayers would like the SRD to consider spreading the cost of the sewer system beyond the service area because it has community wide benefits.

Just Posted

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Vancouver Island woman to attempt historic swim across Juan de Fuca Strait today

Ultra-marathon swimmer Susan Simmons to attempt to swim from Victoria to Port Angeles and back

Authorities mull evacuation order for Zeballos

By David Gordon Koch Campbell River Mirror Smoke billowed from the steep… Continue reading

Cambridge appointed Interim Superintendent of Campbell River School District

Temporary CEO comes from Sooke where he spent 37 years, including nine as superintendent

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

RCMP looking for missing Duncan teen

Dallas Macleod, 18, was last seen on Aug. 10

Lions give up late TD in 24-23 loss to Argos

B.C. falls to 3-5, fumbling away last-minute chance in Toronto

Eagle tree cut down legally a 1st for B.C. city

Planned eagle preserve ‘a first for City of Surrey’

Smoky skies like a disappearing act for sights, monuments around B.C.

Haze expected to last the next several days, Environment Canada said

Canadians react to death of former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan at age 80

Nobel Peace Prize-winning former UN leader died early Saturday following a short illness

44 drownings so far this year in B.C.

Lifesaving Society urging caution to prevent deaths while on lakes, oceans and in pools

Some of B.C.’s air quality levels worse than Jodhpur, India

Okanagan, northern B.C. seeing some of the worst air quality globally

Most Read