Sooke electors nix EPCOR deal

2,036 electors say no to 21-year agreement

For the past six years, EPCOR Water Services has been operating and maintaining the wastewater treatment plant in Sooke. Council was considering entering into a 21-year agreement with the company for their services but the electorate said “no.”

An Alternate Approval Process (AAP) had been initiated and 2,036 electors said they were opposed to the long term agreement.

“This is the democratic process at work” said Mayor Janet Evans, “We have heard from the public and council will now consider options for going forward for the operation of our wastewater system.”

There was a concerted campaign of door-to-door knocking where community members got the AAP into the hands of homeowners. Grassroots town hall meetings, letter writing, and advertising on the opposition side brought the issue to the fore front in the community. A Fair Sewer Services for Sooke committee comprised of mayor hopeful Wendal Milne, Rick Kasper, former MLA and District of Sooke councillor and current Councillor Herb Haldane spearheaded the drive for a ‘no’ vote. Joining in the campaign against the 21-year agreement was a group called Sooke Water Watch supported by COPE 491.

The District of Sooke sent out information from its perspective outlining the benefits of having EPCOR continue operating and maintaining the plant. The electors were then left to make up their minds. The AAP needed 975 votes or 10 per cent of the eligible voters to pass.

Wendal Milne said the door-knocking resulted in a strong representation of the thoughts of about 40 per cent of the people of Sooke in regard to this 21-year deal.

He said comments were that the 21-year deal was too long; and the district failed to look at a competitive process.

“What bubbled over was a frustration with the current council and the perception that a lot was done in secret,” said Milne. “For some it was just the perception, right or wrong.”

He thinks the district should sign a one-year deal with EPCOR and then look at other options.

“All I want is the best deal for the citizens of Sooke,” Milne said.

Just Posted

West Shore RCMP, Search and Rescue, Langford Fire continue search for missing Langford man

31-year-old Joshua Bennett of Langford went missing on March 9

Sooke painter highlights Emily Carr at all-portrait show

Whether or not you are a fan of Emily Carr’s work, check… Continue reading

Search and rescue volunteers work to keep waterways safe

Over 1,000 volunteers help keep mariners safe; headquarters based in Sooke

Victoria police search for missing man and vehicle and travel trailer

Last seen on March 17 driving white Honda Ridgeline bearing B.C. licence plate CG 4316

Red-tailed hawk’s own bill is killing him

‘Most birds with this syndrome will starve to death without treatment’

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

B.C. girl and her toy monkey make videos to fight negativity on Facebook

Ava Ast created the Ava and Cello’s Good Deed Page last month

B.C. man sentenced for tying up, assaulting and robbing another man at hotel on Vancouver Island

Gabriel Stephen Nelson robbed and assaulted travelling businessman in Nanaimo in 2017

Deadline extended through April to nominate top B.C. educators

Second year of Premier John Horgan’s awards offers $3,000 bursary

Victoria meme accounts unite residents

Poking fun at common frustrations around Greater Victoria brings laughs

Paramedic staff shortage at critical level: B.C. union

A number of units were out of service due to lack of staffing in Lower Mainland, union says

B.C. lottery winner being sued by Surrey co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

BIG READ: The two sides of the Strait of Georgia roe herring fishery

The case for the Strait of Georgia roe herring fishery Comox fisherman,… Continue reading

Fraser Health under fire again for taxiing homeless man from Langley to Hope

Patient sent to Hope shelter because a spot in the man’s home community couldn’t be located

Most Read