RDKB declines to reimburse Rossland

City overpaid on fire hydrant upkeep

The regional district has turned down Rossland’s request for back payment for four years of fire hydrant maintenance.

Since 2010, Rossland has had a deal with the Regional District of the Kootenay Boundary where the region pays the city just over $100 per year, per hydrant.

An issue arose when the city discovered they had been under-reporting the number of hydrants maintained, reducing their payment by $15,187.21 over four years.

At the most recent board of directors meeting, the RDKB received an invoice from the Golden City requesting payment of the over $15,000, but the regional district followed a recommendation presented by RDKB Chief Administrative Officer, John MacLean, and declined to pay.

“We went through a couple of issues here to determine which way we wanted to go with this,” said MacLean. “At the end of the day, the recommendation was based on how difficult it would be to go back in time.”

MacLean says every dollar in the fire budget is accounted for, leaving no room for an extra $15,000 to be paid out.

“The fire budget is a very tight budget,” he said. “It is a large budget, but very tight.”

According to the RDKB, Rossland was responsible for correctly counting the hydrants and the district is not on the hook for the money.

Manager of Operations for Rossland, Darrin Albo, says the city relied on the reports from operators when submitting hydrant counts to the regional district for payment over the last five years.

“I know there are some discrepancies over whether the hydrants are in a strata,” he said, adding that they still flush strata hydrants, but the city doesn’t own them.

“When we get a report back from our operators, they will report that they flushed so many hydrants and then we use that number.”

The discrepancy in number of hydrants has been remedied for the 2014 payment from the RDKB, but only after a survey of the city and a hydrant count.

“This year, we actually went around and looked at our GIS (geographic information system) and we went around and physically counted of all of our hydrants, and that is why the number we have now corresponds with how many hydrants we actually own,” he said.

Rossland Mayor Kathy Moore was at the RDKB committee meeting where the decision to decline payment was made, and says she has no plans to contest it.

“The agreement is that cities are to tell the RDKB what hydrants they have and submit a map,” she said. “Evidently the city made a mistake and didn’t do that (from 2010 to 2013). I wouldn’t want someone to come to me and say, ‘Hey, I forgot to bill you four years ago, but I am billing you now.’”

Moore says the final decision on whether to accept the RDKB’s choice will lie with council, but she doesn’t foresee any backlash.

“It will come to council as an information item and if they decide they want to do something further with it, we will,” she said. “I was at the RDKB meeting though and I didn’t have anything to say in Rossland’s defense.”

Just Posted

Premier Horgan talks jobs and opportunity at Castlegar mill

Upbeat visit brings message of hope and co-operation among Kootenay forestry players

Recycle major appliances for free in Kootenay Boundary

Free service begins May 1; Refrigerant appliances not included at Greater Trail regional landfill

Gas venting from tanker at Castlegar rail yard posed no danger: officials

Argon gas discharged from a CP tanker car on Friday, April 19.

Carfentanil found for first time in Castlegar

Killer opiod found in local illegal drug market

Rossland’s Seven Summits school gets grant to grow global presence

Centre for Learning hopes to triple the number of international students it has

VIDEO: Driver in bizarre hit-and-run at B.C. car dealership turns herself in

Police believe alcohol was a factor in incident causing estimated $15,000 in damages

Allegedly intoxicated man arrested after 3 paramedics attacked at Kamloops hospital

Paramedics had transported the man to Royal Inlands Hospital for medical treatment

Canadian privacy watchdogs find major shortcomings in Facebook probe

The probe followed reports that Facebook had let an outside organization use an app to access users’ personal info

B.C., Ottawa talk 50/50 split on abandoned bus-route service

B.C. has paid $2 million on a bus service for the northern part of the province

‘B.C. cannot wait for action’: Top doctor urges province to decriminalize illicit drugs

Dr. Bonnie Henry says current approach in ‘war on drugs’ has criminalized and stigmatized drug users

B.C. woman, 76, challenges alcohol-screening laws after failing to give breath sample

Norma McLeod was unable to provide a sample because of her medical conditions

New report on 2017 wildfires calls for better coordination with B.C. First Nations

Tsilhqot’in National Government documents 2017 disaster and lists 33 calls to action

B.C. youth coach banned amid sexual harassment, bullying scandal: Water Polo Canada

Justin Mitchell can’t take part in Water Polo Canada events or clubs

Wilson-Raybould: Feds want to just ‘manage the problem’ of Indigenous Peoples

Former federal justice minister speaks at First Nations Justice Council meeting in B.C.

Most Read