A look into the potential of a three-way marriage between Trail, Rossland and Warfield has been rejected by the Silver City.
“Trail’s No. 1 choice remains a Greater Trail municipal study,” said Dieter Bogs at a council meeting Monday night.
“In the meantime, since there are so many other irons in the fire, we will look at an opportunity with Warfield. It’s the easiest of all the studies, that’s why we’re doing it at this time.”
Rossland was hoping to be included in the study between its sister communities, and sent out a request for the second time since last summer.
Rossland Mayor Greg Granstrom believes it’s about time the three communities provided some information to their citizens, hoping some answers would provide some closure to the topic he’s heard about for the past 50 years.
“It would show what the key issues are and where the benefits would lie – that’s the reason for it,” he said. “Let’s discuss the issues, get the numbers out in the open and synergies out in the open and let residents decide if they want to continue with this.”
With a recent step toward some closure on a regional sewer deal, Granstrom said Wednesday he was hopeful Trail would open up the door they closed on the city before.
But that’s where the majority of Trail’s concerns persist, explained Trail city administrator David Perehudoff, pointing to a pending regional recreation agreement.
“The way Rossland has dealt with these matters serves to demonstrate how their involvement may only serve to negatively impact any sort of discussion with Warfield that could actually lead to restructuring,” he wrote in a report to council.
The city is also concerned with a potential property tax shift, he said.
“There is a significant gap between residential taxes in Trail versus Rossland. It’s a major difficulty to facilitate an amalgamation without a significant property tax shift.”
Trail is hopeful that a small study between the city and neighbouring village could lead to a broader study on amalgamation, but understands this information will not be gleaned by simply lumping its study together with the one planned for the Beaver Valley.
“It would be effectively impossible to look at each piece separately, it’s not a puzzle,” said Perehudoff.
Trail and Warfield await proposals from three consultants before making a selection and getting the study underway.