The Strathcona Regional District is considering going out on its own when it comes to waste management. File photo

Strathcona Regional District considers split from Comox Valley over waste service

Major of board wants SRD staff to look at feasibility of running its own service

A decade ago the Strathcona and Comox Valley broke up.

What had been one regional district covering much of northern Vancouver Island split into two separate regional bodies. One area where the two remain connected though has been waste management.

That could change, however, as members of the Strathcona Regional District board decided to direct staff to look at the feasibility of breaking away from Comox Strathcona Waste Management (CSWM), which provides waste and recycling services throughout the two regions.

RELATED STORY: Plenty more waste in Comox Valley and Campbell River landfills could be diverted – audit

At issue is cost. In a short report to the rest of the SRD board, Director John MacDonald, who represents Sayward as mayor, outlined a process of what he views as an unfair tax burden on SRD residents, saying that CSWM brought out a tax of roughly $3 a few years after the two regional districts separated, despite opposition from SRD members, with the SRD membership having little recourse because it is outvoted in weighted votes. This amount has increased regularly, MacDonald writes, to where this tax amount equalled $23.65 this past year.

He also states when he started at the regional district, he was informed that solid waste management was to be self-supporting through tipping fees.

“I just think it’s outrageous,” he told the SRD board at the latest meeting on July 18. “I think we have to take a look and see if we can do it ourselves.”

MacDonald made a motion for SRD staff to study the implications of the regional district separating from the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) for solid waste management.

The CVRD has declined to comment at this time in order to let the SRD proceed with its motion.

SRD Area C Director Jim Abram reiterated McDonald’s comments about how costs have escalated regularly, even though they had been informed service was to be covered by tipping fees.

“It’s ridiculous that we’re paying the money we are,” he said. “This is killing us. This is one of the highest things on our tax bill.”

Area D Director Brenda Leigh disagreed, calling the idea “foolhardy” and saying she could not support the motion as almost all of the SRD board had agreed to the 10-year plan for solid waste being implemented.

“There’s many small communities on this board that receive benefits from the solid waste plan,” she said. “That solid waste program in the Comox Valley has the staff, the equipment, the know-how…. We need to follow through on the plan we voted for 10 years ago.”

All the board members present, other than Leigh, voted in favour of the motion.

Just Posted

Campbell River kicks off Poppy Campaign

City’s mayor steps up to buy first Remembrance Day poppy

SD72 unveils new logo designed by Curtis Wilson

‘It’s tremendous’ says school board trustee

Vancouver Island Society for Adaptive Snowsports volunteer recruitment session planned

The Vancouver Island Society for Adaptive Snowsports is a non-profit charitable society… Continue reading

Campbell River Search and Rescue to be called in to search for Kelly McLoed

If you come across a groundsearch team tomorrow, listen to them.

Second young woman dies after rollover crash near Williams Lake

‘Someone’s going to get her heart, which is awesome, because she has the best heart in the world’

Google searches for ‘how to vote’ surge on Election Day

Interest spikes despite social media campaign by Elections Canada

Union says Western Forest Products refuses to budge from ‘unreasonable concessions’

According to a press release, both parties met on Oct. 16, 18, 19, and 20.

Alberta man pleads guilty, fined for hunting without a licence in North Island

It’s the responsibility of each hunter or angler to know whether they are considered a B.C. Resident.

B.C. mayor apologizes for removal of Queen’s portrait from council chambers

‘I prefer to be inclusive of the many aspects of our history’

Alcohol a possible factor in crash that killed 17-year-old girl near Williams Lake

A pickup truck left the road and rolled over on Highway 20 on the weekend

Rare bird spotted in Victoria draws enthusiasts from across the continent

It’s the first time a yellow-browed warbler has been reported on the mainland of North America

B.C. woman must pay $1,000 after unleashed dog bites another

Owner should never have left Bibi unattended, tribunal member wrote

Most Read