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Community co-operation needed in Salmon Arm to ride through summer drought

Council Report by Coun. Tim Lavery

I focus more on big picture matters when I’m up-to-bat for the Observer’s council column.

The top three for me right now are the current drought, wildfire risks and need for water conservation; the 2022 Annual Report submitted last month and the upcoming kickoff to our official community plan review.

The provincewide drought and wildfire risks, as we are now in the peak wildfire window, are unprecedented and deteriorating. Provincial rivers have extremely low flow rates, groundwater has diminished and water demands for key necessities are under pressure.

Water needs to be conserved.

Salmon Arm has started Stage 3 water restrictions which means limited watering of only *once* per week. Please go to to find out when you can water, for how long and more details on permitted usage activities.

It’s going to take community co-operation to ride the drought out and hopefully avoid having to go to Stage 4 restrictions. Look for the Water Restriction signs around town. We need to all work together on this.

Salmon Arm’s 2022 Annual Report was submitted to council last month. It’s a summary chock-full of important financial information, completed & underway projects and interesting metrics of our infrastructure. Do you know that we have 447 kilometres of paved roads needing to be maintained and snowplowed (each way!) or 256 kms of storm and sanitary mains, or 205 kms of water mains? The annual report of important info and interesting factoids is available at

Finally, in the stay-tuned category, the city is beginning the process of our official community plan (OCP) review. There’ll be lots of opportunity for residents to contribute to the next long-term vision for Salmon Arm as well as setting out objectives and policies that will guide decisions on planning, land use and the provision of municipal services.

Enjoy the summer safely and responsibly folks – with a special thanks to our wildfire crews and all those who provide support for them.

Read more: Rollout of Salmon Arm water restrictions educational for city and public

Read more: Shuswap Lake hits another record low, prompting boat launch closures
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