Area G Director Lynne Smith at the recent groundbreaking at the Chemainus Library. (Don Bodger photo)

Water identified as the primary source of concern for Saltair residents

Pending filtration, dam and distribution systems are going to mean an added tax burden

Lynne Smith says Saltair residents have identified safe drinking water to all the homes in Saltair as their priority.

It’s not going to come without a cost.

The first-year Cowichan Valley Regional District Area G director held a community meeting on April 2 at the Saltair Community Centre gym where she explained to about 200 residents what is coming down the pipe: many real and potential future tax increases.

Smith went over the Saltair Water System and the future options with regards to the Island Health-mandated filtration system and also presented some options for the future of the distribution system upgrades that taxpayers have been funding for the past seven years.

The CVRD applied for a grant for the Saltair Water Filtration system in August of 2018 and the grant awards should be known shortly. A grant would reduce the cost to Saltair taxpayers for a Saltair water stand-alone filtration system.

Smith cited an example of a $3.4 million system with the grant would require approximately a $900,000 loan from the taxpayers.

She was also optimistic about the CVRD’s ability to obtain an additional grant for the Stocking Lake dam restoration work.

“This year the Stocking Lake Dam has also reached a point where there are financial needs to ensure the future containment of Stocking Lake water,” she added.

Area G includes many of the watersheds that supply water to Saltair, Ladysmith, Diamond, Stz’uminus First Nation (Oyster Bay) and others.

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