There has been some information in recent issues of the Record regarding the proposed roadside collection of garbage and recycling in electoral areas A, B and C that have prompted this letter as a further effort to present the facts.
In November 2012, the CVRD board passed a resolution to direct staff to explore the concept as it appeared that public interest might be growing for roadside collection of garbage and recycling.
In the spring of this year, 75 per cent of the rural area respondents to the CVRD 2013 resident survey supported such a program, and of those who indicated support, 95 and 97 per cent favoured collection of garbage and recycling, respectively.
Because such a system would require setting up a regional service, it is necessary to gain the assent of the electorate, and that is why a referendum will be held Nov. 16 to determine whether electors support and wish to proceed with roadside garbage and recycling pickup service for electoral areas A, B and C (excluding Denman Island, Hornby Island, the Royston collection area and the Mount Washington resort community).
If the referendum passes, all residential properties within the service area would receive collection, except for apartment buildings with more than four units and mobile home parks. The proposed service would include weekly pickup of garbage (up to one 80L can) and recycling (unlimited quantities).
All eligible residential properties in the service area would be able to participate in weekly pickup of garbage and recycling; there would be no “opting out” of the service permitted.
A concern has been raised that the CVRD will fund the service through taxes from property owners based on assessed property values, however, the service contract with BFI Canada would be for a period of three years at a cost of approximately $150 per household, per year, with each household paying the same amount.
If approved, service would commence in September 2014 once the bylaw is formally established and approved as part of the annual financial plan.
We strongly encourage residents and/or property owners to learn more about this proposed service at an open house in the CVRD boardroom (550B Comox Rd. in Courtenay) on Tuesday, Oct. 22 from 5 to 8 p.m.
In addition, CVRD representatives will circulate through the electoral areas with information handouts between Nov. 4 and 12 and will also be on location at the Black Creek Farm and Feed Supply on Nov. 2 from 9 a.m. to noon.
If you have lived in or have owned property in the proposed service area for at least 30 days prior to voting day and you are an eligible voter, you are strongly encouraged to participate in the referendum. There are also three advance voting opportunities for those who cannot attend the referendum on November 16.
Information on the proposed service, voting locations, and a set of “frequently asked questions” can all be found at www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/vote.
Editor’s note: James Warren is the chief legislative officer for the Comox Valley Regional District.