Editorial: Better keep that septic tank clean

It’s a fantasy to believe that rural residents can afford a sewage system without the city’s help

It’s a fantasy to believe that rural residents can afford a sewage system without the city’s help.

Tueday’s announcement that the City of Campbell River was withdrawing its support to extend the sewage system into Area D, will send the project onto the back burner for years.

However, that’s not the message coming from Brenda Leigh, the long-time elected director representing Area D on the Strathcona Regional District. In response to the city’s withdrawal, Leigh said she isn’t surprised by the decision and added the region will carry on with its own plans for a sewage system to serve a good portion of Area D residents who live just south of Ocean Grove. She wasn’t specific and that’s probably for the best. There’s no way a couple thousand people can afford to build their own sewage treatment facility, install all the infrastructure and then pay to remove their backyard septic systems.

Perhaps if this was rich West Vancouver it would be doable, but not in rural Vancouver Island.

A sewage system is sorely needed for Area D and the most cost-effective way to do this is to tie into the city’s system which can easily accommodate the extra waste.

The fact is, if there’s ever sewer lines installed in Area D, they’ll be built with provincial and federal tax dollars, and it’s hard to imagine those two upper levels of government shelling out any more for a new sewage treatment facility.

However, the reality is all three levels cannot currently afford to spend millions for a relatively small area. So that means more waiting and more saving for the day when government finances hopefully improve. In the meantime, Area D residents, keep those septic systems in good working order.

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