RDN Map French Creek Water Service Area.

RDN to borrow funds for $1.8M French Creek water upgrade

Authorization bylaw required for district’s grant application to be considered

Officials believe the French Creek water system needs an upgrade.

The Regional District of Nanaimo board has approved a plan to improve the system due to extemely high levels of iron and manganese in the water that occasionally turns the colour to dark brown, like tea. It is a problem that has existed for many years.

The water source for the French Creek Water Service Area comes from a series of groundwater wells located nearby. The water source is chlorinated and stored in one reservoir.

Manager of Water Services, Murray Walters, in his report to the RDN board, indicated that although the quality of the water meets the mandatory health requirements for drinking water, it exceeds the recommended aesthetic requirement. He said that while it is safe to drink, it is not appealing to the eyes or the palate.

The planned water system upgrade project, which will cost around $1,871,500, will involve a new treatment plant, reservoir, well upgrade and control upgrade.

However, the water service area does not have sufficient funds to finance this major expenditure and is going to rely on provincial and federal grants.

Last August, the RDN applied for a grant under the ‘Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program — Environmental Quality’, a program administered by the province’s Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing. For the grant application to be considered, the RDN needs to provide proof of its financial commitment to the project by the end of this year.

Walters had informed the board the RDN’s share of the cost of the project would be $505,305, which is included in the RDN’s 10-year capital plan and slated to start in 2023. Half of the amount, Walters said, will come from reserves and the other half from borrowing.

To gain the approval of the MMAH, the regional district was advised by the province to establish a loan authorization bylaw. Once it is given third reading by the board, the next step would be to gain approval of the 239 parcels in French Creek that would share paying the debt.

Staff suggested that the approval by taxpayers be in the form of assent of electors or alternative approval process. It would only be sought if the grant application is successful. The loan authorization bylaw will not be applied if grant application fails.

Just Posted

Parksville Lawn Bowling Club on a roll for artificial turf

Project to cost over $500,000 but will save club money

More Parksville pop-up water parks planned

Fire department says Sunday, Aug. 18 next one on the agenda

Hi Neighbour Day celebrates 50th year in Errington

Pancake breakfast, parade, zucchini race and more planned for this years’ festivities

Semi-truck crashes on Hwy. 4 between Port Alberni and Tofino-Ucluelet

Drivers heading in or out of Tofino-Ucluelet Friday afternoon should expect delays

Errington scrap wood fire still under investigation

Three fire departments deployed to battle highly visible blaze

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Ferries employees participating in Denman Island cleanup for plastic-shedding ferry

The cleanup comes a few weeks after one organized by residents of the Island

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Most Read