RDEK town hall packs Edgewater community centre

The Regional District of East Kootenay held its second Area G Town Hall Meeting in Edgewater to a packed community hall.

EDGEWATER — The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) held its second Area G Town Hall Meeting on Thursday, February 16 in Edgewater to a packed community hall.

Director Gerry Wilke opened the meeting with a general report detailing some of the ongoing projects RDEK is working on, such as the Dry Gulch water system, before Chief Financial Officer Shawn Tomlin took the stage to outline the five-year financial plan.

Total operating expenditure for 2012 is to exceed $29 million, which includes over $ 3 million in municipal debt payments. Solid waste and recycling are expected to take upwards of 30 per cent of the budget. There is also a scheduled $ 2.5 million major replacement of water systems in Edgewater in 2014.

Budget talks were followed by the RDEK agricultural report, which detailed ongoing efforts to develop an agricultural plan for the region.

A steering committee made up of local farmers and ranchers was formed in December, and the next steps for the group are to finalize terms of reference for the group as well as looking at contracting an agricultural consultant.

Other items of the agenda included a presentation from Wildsight detailing the clean-up of Sinclair Creek, an update from the Fairmont and Windermere Fire Chief who is looking for more firefighters, and a report from Brian Funke concerning water conservation.

The next RDEK Town Hall Meeting takes place February 23 for Area F, in the Windermere Community Hall.