Sicamous and the Columbia Shuswap Regional District have still not reached a resolution regarding the relocation the community’s recycling depot.
Mayor Terry Rysz and Sicamous councillors are adamant the depot was in a good location and the regional district favours combining the household recycling and bottle depots.
At their Aug. 15 meeting, the CSRD board voted to wait and investigate other options before making a decision. This was in response to a formal request from the District of Sicamous, asking that the community’s recycling service be returned to its location behind Parkland Mall.
In June, the board voted to relocate Sicamous’ recycling depot to the bottle depot at 322 Finlayson St.
Later that month, the CSRD put the move on hold to allow Sicamous council time to respond.
“We do not support locating recycling facilities in our downtown core, as it contravenes section 8.5.3 of our official community plan… it compromises beautification efforts to our downtown core,” stated Mayor Terry Rysz in a letter to the CSRD.
“The most convenient and accessible location for the recycling services in our opinion is at 1133 Eagle Pass Way, the Parkland Mall.”
A CSRD staff report notes the combining of depots would have created a convenient, one-stop drop-off of recyclables for residents.
“The convenience of a one-stop-drop for recyclables has been proven in other areas to increase the diversion of recyclables,” states the report.
CSRD staff members stated they presented the relocation of the recycling depot to the board in June, while under the impression that Sicamous’ council was in favour of the move. Environmental services team leader Ben Van Nostrand and operations manager Darcy Mooney attributed this to a miscomunication with the District of Sicamous’ staff.
Van Nostrand requested time to work with Sicamous to explore both a move back to the mall and to other locations.
Mooney said that working with the District of Sicamous, he thinks creating a one-stop drop for recycling in the community is possible. He said the CSRD wants to be part of the discussion of possibly relocating both the bottle depot and household recycling bins to a brand-new location.
He said if the board would hold off on a decision, his staff could bring back a report on other possibilities for relocation by October.
Mooney noted the equipment for recycling at the mall has been relocated and the service contractor who was operating the depot has moved on. He said because they would have to bring on a new operator and renegotiate the agreement with the mall, it would likely be three to five months before the depot could reopen.
Rysz maintains the location at the Parkland Shopping centre is the ideal location for the recycling depot. He noted residents are unhappy with having to drive out of town to drop off recycling and the site at the Sicamous landfill is congested.
“To delay it is only going to create more animosity when it comes to the residents of Sicamous. They’re expecting recycling services to be returned to the centre of the community,” he said.
The CSRD board voted to delay a decision on the move in order to give their staff and the District of Sicamous time to investigate other options. Rysz and other directors voted in opposition to the delay.