To the Editor,
The LRA (Lillooet Ratepayers Association) have attended 99 per cent of council meetings over three years in attempting to influence local governance civilly in the direction of low taxes; ‘green’ initiatives (lower carbon footprint); arsenic-free potable water; gravity fed water; appropriate watering restrictions; questioning 11 water pumps for 1100+/- homes with the cost of electricity; and the fire risk without emergency backup power to pumps in the event of fire. Firefighters in Slave Lake lost three water sources when power lines burned; over 400 homes burnt. The $10,127,000 grant excluded backup power, so another $175-$250,000 may be required.
None are irrational, destructive ideals, yet we are openly scorned. One has to question this and look beyond the people and names, rumours, BRLN bias, online comments, interviews on CBC, and look to LRA reports that lay dormant, disregarded by our elected representatives.
Some know what is wrong; it is well-documented and finding no local open discussion or redress, we ask that the provincial government conduct an inquiry immediately, ensuring further monies are well spent.
Meeting with the Council of Canadians our group (10 LRA and friends) were ‘probably the most educated group on water in Canada’ - because we dedicated ourselves to this for Lillooet. Is an entire bureaucracy disinterested in the public who pays them? Do they all consult only with administrations and ignore all public concerns?
The LRA commissioned a report on arsenic dated Aug. 17, 2009 which gives brilliant insight into historical and current Lillooet. Response to arsenic concerns in the BRLN in June and July 2011, the District of Lillooet refuted our (latest) scientific information as ‘misinformation’ and together with the local Chamber of Commerce took a stand to accept arsenic water sources. Administration and Chamber of Commerce meet in the DoL offices and when invited to express our arsenic concerns there, the LRA were cut off and have been anathema since.
The first LRA report, Sept. 2, 2009 was a review of the TRUE engineering Water Master Plan with comments, hand delivered to councillors and DoL. Mayor Bontron said he would forward it to TRUE; nothing more was heard.
The second report, Mar. 11, 2010 pointed out all four wells are located within the 50-foot exclusion zone from rail lines, plus other worries about parking lot drainage into well caps. Ten governmental departments received it but we heard nothing more.
The third report, July 14, 2010 was on groundwater and the 45 per cent higher death rate for our Local Health Area. We heard nothing more.
Our final report is the Town Creek Diversion, possible Water Act contravention, and Trench Remediation. We have yet to hear answers to basic questions about the hydrologists and engineers who signed on these watershed changes.
Why three years of in camera (secret) meetings? Decisions are not required to be disclosed—ever! What is going on?
If you care for Lillooet, support all the dedicated people who truly care about Lillooet and our beautiful valley and check the local stores for a copy of the petition.
Lillooet Ratepayers Association