City of Trail makes final bid for regional sewer agreement

Trail city council would prefer to avoid arbitration over regional sewer decisions, but will if necessary

Trail doesn’t want to see a regional sewer decision go to arbitration but is prepared to do so if Rossland doesn’t see fit recommendations made by a mediator who weighed into the service review.

George Paul of Community Solutions Incorporated has presented his unbiased opinion on a review on cost apportionment that was completed two years ago, suggesting the partners – Trail, Warfield and Rossland – should either move to a new formula based on 50 per cent population and 50 per cent water consumption or just population.

Paul pointed out that Trail is paying close to 70 per cent of the regional budget following a formula created in the late 1960s, which is based mostly on population and projected growth that is in no way reflective of the growth that actually occurred.

The actual population of Trail is less than 44 per cent of the estimate made more than 40 years ago, while the populations of Warfield and Rossland are between 57 and 65 per cent of the estimates, the report noted.

Since some time has passed since receipt of the mediator’s report and with some new elected officials on council, Trail deemed it prudent to first seek confirmation of Rossland’s position before penning a letter to the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development requesting that the matter be directed to binding arbitration.

“We are most anxious to sit down and have a meeting with the City of Trail,” Rossland Mayor Greg Granstrom confirmed.

“Perhaps there has been some misunderstanding to this whole issue.

“When the mediator was here, Rossland presented two proposals that we don’t think got communicated to the City of Trail or Village of Warfield so we’re anxious to sit down with them and discuss it.”

Though Granstrom would not shed light on details at this time, as he’d like to speak with both municipalities before going public, he said the city’s position is not completely reflective of the mediator’s advice.

“The City of Rossland recognizes that things have changed and we believe there are positive things that we can do outside of that supplementary letter patent to make it more equitable,” he added.

Rossland has responded to Trail in hopes of having a formal meeting on this subject.

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