Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

edwin1666
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Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by edwin1666 »

Carol was asked by 5 past Chairman of the District to put off building the Water Treatment Facility until the pipeline from Bear Lake was built and Grants were available from the Provincial and Federal Governments. This would have saved the tax payers of Westbank Irrigation District over 10 million dollars and we would have been able to generate power from the gravity feed system. Now we pump every drop of water we use for agriculture and domestic use. The land the treatment plant is on might not be able to be used as the provincial government still has to approve the lease. Building without the lease or land grant inplace was a mistake along with no pipeline first and no grants.
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tiomio
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by tiomio »

So....is this the reason the citizens receiving water from Westbank Irrigation are paying higher rates for every drop of water used?
RosieJoe
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by RosieJoe »

tiomio wrote:So....is this the reason the citizens receiving water from Westbank Irrigation are paying higher rates for every drop of water used?


Yes...this is exactly the reason.
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tiomio
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by tiomio »

In that case, Carol Zanon has just been removed from my list of who to vote for this morning for Council! We are paying through the nose for our water and could have saved 10 million dollars!!!! Poor judgement, costing citizens way too much money, and I am not impressed, at all!
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Bestside
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

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edwin1666 wrote:Carol was asked by 5 past Chairman of the District to put off building the Water Treatment Facility until the pipeline from Bear Lake was built and Grants were available from the Provincial and Federal Governments. This would have saved the tax payers of Westbank Irrigation District over 10 million dollars and we would have been able to generate power from the gravity feed system. Now we pump every drop of water we use for agriculture and domestic use. The land the treatment plant is on might not be able to be used as the provincial government still has to approve the lease. Building without the lease or land grant inplace was a mistake along with no pipeline first and no grants.

That's an interesting comment. Could you provide more details?

I planned on voting for Zanon for her passion on preserving the watersheds you speak of to protect our water supply for the future. She is undoubtedly the most intelligent person on council but that does not always jive with peoples perceptions of issues for sure.

How long a wait? The Westbank water was crap for human consumption... better quality water was urgently required was it not? Of course the crap water was fine to irrigate your orchards. How much more costly is it to irrigate your farm now?

The plant would be required under either scenario. I really wonder at your saying the province won't let us use the plant... that is just far fetched.

What's the $10M comprised of? How much power and what would be the net profit or loss on generating power from a water distribution feed?

As for grants... did she have a crystal ball? That said it would be better the grants for sewers went into a water treatment plant at the front end for the benefit of everyone, rather than into the sewer at the back end and right into the pockets of sewer recipients like Findlater. Those millions in sewer grants just helped a few...

Concerning the $10M I think I recall you were against Zanon wanting to go for a $2.5 million windfall of cash, parkland, bathrooms and parking facilities that would have been good for Westbank in particular and for the entire district's financial assets, in exchange for a useless road end located at a high risk intersection... so I see a conflict in your thinking. I will vote for Zanon because on balance she is one of the top four on council, certainly in respect to her integrity as well.
"Conservatives have whipped themselves into spasms of outrage and despair that block all strategic thinking" - David Frum
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Bestside
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

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RosieJoe wrote:
tiomio wrote:So....is this the reason the citizens receiving water from Westbank Irrigation are paying higher rates for every drop of water used?

Yes...this is exactly the reason.

You are paying higher rates now because you now have much better potable water that is actually fit for human consumption.
"Conservatives have whipped themselves into spasms of outrage and despair that block all strategic thinking" - David Frum
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Urbane
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by Urbane »

Westbank water was pitiful at runoff times before the new treatment facility went in. It looked like tea even before you put the teabag in and I'm not exaggerating. Something had to be done for sure. And whether or not one agrees with the decision to go ahead with the facility I'm at a loss to know why Carol Zanon has been singled out for the decision. I'd like to hear more info from the OP and/or perhaps Darren Schlamp if he's reading these threads could comment.
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tiomio
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by tiomio »

I agree the water was disgusting during runoff, however for the remainder of the year the water was just fine. I could have purchased a lot of bottled water during runoff for what my water is costing me now! I agree Zanon was not alone in making these decisions, however, perhaps the citizens should have had a say in this decision rather than just foraging ahead.
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Bestside
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

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tiomio wrote:I agree the water was disgusting during runoff, however for the remainder of the year the water was just fine. I could have purchased a lot of bottled water during runoff for what my water is costing me now! I agree Zanon was not alone in making these decisions, however, perhaps the citizens should have had a say in this decision rather than just foraging ahead.

Compared to other water districts Westbank water was disgusting all year.

Everyone's water rates have gone up, not only Westbanks. So there would have been huge increase anyway. Also if I recall there were reserves used for the Westbank plant. I think you might be in the process of being misled in placing the blame on Zanon.
"Conservatives have whipped themselves into spasms of outrage and despair that block all strategic thinking" - David Frum
Darren Schlamp
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

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edwin1666 wrote:Carol was asked by 5 past Chairman of the District to put off building the Water Treatment Facility until the pipeline from Bear Lake was built and Grants were available from the Provincial and Federal Governments.

And how many more years would we have had to wait for decent water? Another ten years? Twenty perhaps? Westbank has enjoyed some of the best water quality in BC since 2007. It will be another 5 years at the earliest before DWK offers comparable water quality to Lakeview, and it is wishful thinking to assume that there will be grants available. In addition, Interior Health is not willing to wait until grants are available - utilities using surface water are required to prove that they have secured land for a filtration plant, and the water suppliers must also prove they have the ability to fund filtration without grants.

Bear Lake water is highly coloured and has a turbidity of >1 NTU, which means that it is not suitable for UV disinfection. Had the pipeline from Bear Lake been built, Westbank would have been under a continuous Water Quality Advisory since 2007. In addition, WID would have been in debt for the pipeline, and had no reserves to put towards filtration, so water rates would have been raised even higher.

The decision to proceed with filtration was based on a majority vote requiring at least three out of five trustees. Filtration was first brought forward in 2002 by two newly elected trustees - Robert Furness, and I. Prior to that, filtration had been specifically excluded from review by WID - the pipeline was only compared to a large dam on Powers Creek in a report dating to the mid-1990s, but not to filtration.

Both Robert Furness and I were sick of the inferior water quality delivered by WID at the time, and knew that a pipeline would not bring Westbank's water quality up to meet the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality. This resulted in a report to the WID board in late 2002 / early 2003 by Don Dobson and Urban Systems which compared filtration to the pipeline. That report was not favorable to a pipeline as the lowest lifecycle cost for WID.

In 2003, Dennis Lenihan was elected to the WID board. A more detailed report was completed by Associated Engineering in 2003-2004 which reviewed more water quality improvement options, including UV disinfection of Okanagan Lake water. Again, the pipeline did not make sense on a lifecycle cost basis when you have a goal of meeting the GCDWQ.

With the election of a majority of trustees who wanted our water to meet national guidelines, the two reports were the final nails in the coffin of the pipeline. Even if Carol had listened to those past chairs and chosen to ignore two engineering reports and the lower lifecycle costs of filtration, it wouldn't have mattered. Bob, Dennis, and I would not have voted for the pipeline, and filtration would have proceeded.

You should be able to view the WID minutes at the DWK office, so you can confirm all of this for yourself in public documents.

edwin1666 wrote:This would have saved the tax payers of Westbank Irrigation District over 10 million dollars and we would have been able to generate power from the gravity feed system.


The lifecycle cost analysis proved that the pipeline plus filtration was far more expensive than filtration alone. The power generation was reviewed by Stantech in 2004, and the revenue potential was nowhere near sufficient to cover the pipeline cost.

edwin1666 wrote:Now we pump every drop of water we use for agriculture and domestic use.

There are low lift pumps in the filtration plant that pump the filtered water up about 10 meters to the balancing reservoir. The pumping costs for that are trivial.

edwin1666 wrote:The land the treatment plant is on might not be able to be used as the provincial government still has to approve the lease. Building without the lease or land grant inplace was a mistake along with no pipeline first and no grants.


If you want to go down that road, Edwin1666, don't forget that several of your family members were trustees, chairs, and employees of WID. We could have a discussion about the costs for the various rights of way that had to be cleaned up and acquired by WID since 2002 for infrastructure that was put in by your family members over the past century.

Permission was obtained from the province to construct the treatment plant on crown land, and a free crown land grant for the treatment plant site was applied for years ago. However, the crown land grant was not finalized by the province before the WID dissolution in December 2010, and with the transition to DWK, I understand that the province has to put the application out for referrals again. It will happen, but the wheels of bureaucracy turn slowly in Victoria.

Also, for those complaining about water costs, the 1970s ended a long time ago. Lake Country will be charging $700/year for water by 2013. Peachland's water rates are approaching WIDs, and they end up on a Water Quality Advisory or a Boil Water Notice every year due to unfiltered creek water. WIDs rates are still not high enough to pay for renewal costs (replacing existing infrastructure as it wears out). While the WID board started increasing the amount designated for renewal in recent years, it is nowhere near high enough to replace major watermains that will start failing over the next 20-50 years. As the filtration plant is paid off, WID ratepayers will be able to devote more towards renewal in the coming years.
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Nebula
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by Nebula »

Note: Peachland's rates have been rising in order to bank money to build... wait for it... a filtration plant.
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Urbane
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by Urbane »

Thanks Darren! The right decision was made and we very much appreciate the improved water that we have now!
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Bestside
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

Post by Bestside »

A great post Mr. Darren Schlamp! As per usual right on the MONEY!

When are you running for a Council seat again? You are needed!
"Conservatives have whipped themselves into spasms of outrage and despair that block all strategic thinking" - David Frum
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Urbane
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Re: Carol Zanon and the Water Treatment Facility

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    Bestside wrote:A great post Mr. Darren Schlamp! As per usual right on the MONEY!

    When are you running for a Council seat again? You are needed!
:smt023

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