Town and Stz’uminus sign major agreement

Service agreement sees the Town of Ladysmith extend its water and sewage services to the Stz'uminus reserve.

A major agreement between the Town of Ladysmith and the Stz’uminus First Nation was passed at last Monday’s regular council meeting.

The agreement, which was signed March 3, will see the Town extend its water and sewage services out to the Stz’uminus reserve.

As Stz’uminus expands in development, including more residential homes, the services from the Town will also increase with further agreements to be signed in the future.

“The first agreement is for 100 units (one unit equals one average residential home) of water and sewer,” Mayor Rob Hutchins told the Chronicle in an e-mail. “Any additional units of sewer must wait until the secondary treatment plant is completed. We hope to see the plant upgrade to secondary treatment completed by the end of 2015.”

Water improvements at the Oyster Bay reserve, required for the agreement to be signed, were completed by the Stz’uminus First Nation at the end of 2013.

“The water and sewer connection to IR 12 (Oyster Bay reserve) is installed,” said Hutchins. “Both parties have now endorsed the agreement. I anticipate documents to be signed within the next two weeks, which will allow the services to operate.”

Hutchins sees this as a big step forward in improving and enhancing relationships with the Stz’uminus First Nation.

“The sewer and water agreement is one outcome of a far-reaching Memorandum of Understanding where Stz’uminus and the Town will be working together collaboratively for the better of both communities.”

Before the agreement was passed unanimously at City Hall last week, Coun. Gord Horth wished to congratulate council and staff.

“It’s a tremendous accomplishment that’s taken a lot of time and effort. Congratulations to everyone,” he said.