photo by Roger Richardson
Okanagan Basin Water Board
Anna Warwick Sears -Executive Director (OBWB) to speak at RDOS this coming Thursday
In 2005, the Okanagan regional districts asked the OBWB to undertake a Water Management Program to assist local governments on shared problems of water quality, supply and policy – returning to OBWB’s 1970 mandate. I will be making a presentation about the review at the RDOS meeting on June 7, 2018.
This program is unique in B.C., and because of it, the OBWB has been able to undertake initiatives and secure external funding that are not possible in other areas. The program provides a regional approach to water planning that bridges the interests of all Okanagan communities. By working with many partners, the program’s impacts have been far greater than would be possible by any one organization, with significant economies of scale. By focusing on valley‐wide issues and opportunities the program complements rather than duplicates work of individual jurisdictions.
The OBWB’s Water Management Program must be renewed by September 7, 2018. OBWB’s Water Management Program Review accompanies this memo. The review process includes a financial overview of the program, an overview compilation of new, completed, and ongoing projects and partnerships, and a summary of Water Conservation and Quality Improvement grant awards (online link given in report).
Recommendations for Program Renewal:
I. Change the structure of the Water Conservation and Quality Improvement Grants Program to award grants on a valley‐wide merit basis, and allow every applicant to access a valley‐wide pool of funds. This change will make the program consistent with all other OBWB programs, such as the sewage infrastructure grants and milfoil program that operate valley‐wide. Being fully merit‐based, the program will have a greater impact – improving water conservation and quality improvement. Applications from the South Okanagan would be accessing a pool of $300,000 rather than a pool of $60,000.
II. In all other respects, continue existing program under the Terms of Reference given in the OBWB Governance Manual.
III. Pursue priorities from the OBWB Strategic Plan
Goal 1: Adequate Supplies of water for all human and environmental uses.
Goal 2: The Okanagan has excellent source water quality – drinkable, swimmable, fishable.
Goal 3: Okanagan local governments, First Nations, water purveyors and stakeholders have up‐todate coordinated plans and policies to protect water quality and water supply, and prepare for extreme events.
Goal 4: The OBWB has excellent relationships, a defined role, and clear communications with stakeholders and other levels of government.
I will be meeting with the Regional Districts of North Okanagan and Central Okanagan (on June 20 and July 19, 2018, respectively). All three Okanagan regional districts must be in agreement for the program to continue. If the Program is not renewed, the OBWB will return to its focus on milfoil control and sewerage assistance grants, and there would no longer be a single agency working to coordinate Okanagan water management. Individual communities would undertake independent water planning, and make independent arrangements for funding and approvals with the Province.
Requested Resolutions: The Okanagan Basin Water Board respectfully requests the Regional District of Okanagan‐Similkameen to reauthorize this program a new term, from April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2023. Each regional district must pass the resolutions for them to come into effect.
Requested Resolution #1.
That the Regional District of Okanagan‐Similkameen approves the following change to the OBWB Governance Manual: that future WCQI grants be awarded on a valley‐wide basis, ranked on the merit of each proposed project as it benefits its region and the valley as a whole.
Requested Resolution #2.
That the Regional District of Okanagan‐Similkameen reaffirms support for the OBWB’s Water Management Program under the Terms of Reference of the OBWB’s Governance Manual, and renewal of the program for another four‐year term, from April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2023.
It begs the question: will the coalition government of the day find a question for the citizens of BC that is easy to understand?
Here is just one side or the argument from an expert:
“Proportional systems will almost always produce minority governments,” he said, which leads to coalitions as different parties cooperate to form government.
“That’s a big change, and a change under the current configuration would probably empower certain parties more than others.”
As a result, minority governments may water down their priorities, he said, and take too long to get things done. On the other hand, different parties can be forced to cooperate to create policies and reform.”
Greg Millard, Political Scientist – Kwantlen College
State of local emergency ended in Town of Osoyoos, local marinas to open soon. Sandbags being returned…
To the north work going on to downscale the problem at Sportsman’s Bowl….. AND to the south of Oliver – Reed Creek’s supply of water is running lower with large valleys carved in fruit-stand pavement.
A few weeks ago I had the unenviable job of making my way through Vancouver traffic. A task that is not for the faint hearted.
My husband Dave needed surgery that could only be done at UBC hospital so we took the trip down to Vancouver. We settled ourselves into a motel, he had the pre-op on the Monday and, on Tuesday he was to be at UBC for 6.30 am. I took the wheel for the fifteen minute drive while Dave navigated the route. Driving through the city at that hour in the morning was a breeze. Sun shining, birds singing and all quiet on the roads, perfect!
The return journey was a different matter.
Living in the Coquitlam area for sixteen years had given me the confidence to handle any road situation but, the past twenty eight years of Oliver driving has spoiled me for city traffic and I am now the little old lady who is scared to push into traffic at halt signs, not the right attitude for Vancouver driving.
Dave had google mapped the route as he knows I have absolutely no sense of direction, so I pulled over several times on the drive home, to make sure I knew where I was going. The return journey took thirty five minutes in the heavy morning traffic. Thanks to the map I didn’t go astray but changing lanes was a challenge and I held my breath every time I had to do it. I received several rude gestures enroute. Arriving back at the motel I was a sweaty mess and headed straight for the shower.
I knew I needed to do this journey several times during the next few days and I was not looking forward to it. Enter an angel in disguise! My eldest daughter is currently awaiting hip replacement surgery and cannot do her nursing job so I was delighted when she rang and asked if it was OK if she came and spent a couple of night in the motel with me, so she could visit her dad. I pretended that I didn’t know she was actually coming to look after me and gladly accepted her offer.
The next time we went to visit Dave we followed her GPS. What a difference! The instrument informed her, well in advance, of turns and road changes so she had lots of time to change lanes. Many times we took a turn that I would have thought was in the wrong direction but it was the shortest route to our destination. The traffic was the same volume but knowing where you are going, in plenty of time to get in the right lane, was marvellous.
Why did we not have one of these marvellous machines in our car?
Several years ago a friend of mine got one and told me how marvellous they were for the nervous driver and I asked Dave to get one. He brought home an item that cost the earth, it gave longtitude and latitude, also elevation, all of which are great if you are going mountaineering or heading across the plains of Africa. Driving through busy traffic they are useless.
After a little heated discussion on the cost of this, apparently, useless article Dave explained how we could enjoy geo-caching with it. I must admit that I really enjoyed this pastime but for direction finding, it was useless. The device goes with us on all trips, he takes direction findings on cruise ships every morning and checks it with the captain’s daily ten am announcements. He took it on Safari in West Africa and, when we were on the Equator, he told the tour guide he was actually a degree out from the actual centre of the globe. All really useful accomplishments you must agree. But for road trips, nada!
Since then I had forgotten about buying one as I rarely go to strange places without Dave at the wheel. Dave is one of those men who can smell the air and then go directly to the destination, no maps needed. I on the other hand can get lost in the back streets of Oliver and have several times got lost, while driving to catering events in Osoyoos.
I do not care about the type of car we drive as long as it is functional and has air conditioning, so I have never urged Dave to buy a car with built in GPS. Dave also wants a functional vehicle and as low cost as possible, so needless to say never wants options he can do without. However, I am now determined to buy one of these devices so I can get to my destination without taking the scenic route that is my usual way of doing things. Happy, confident driving is in my future and maybe I will not get as many strange hand signals from other drivers, none of which can be found in the driving manual.
Alchemy is ancient stuff which we call chemistry these days. Alchemy is basically combining substances in order to have them interact and produce new substances. The classic quest of the ancient Alchemist was to turn lead into gold. The only known Alchemist to even come close was Rumpelstiltskin who, apparently, spun straw into gold. Not quite alchemy. Or is it? Alchemy changes things
Alchemy is the art, or ancient science, of combining ingredients to make something new. By this definition, baking a cake is alchemy. Hey, I’m OK with that. Are you? Before we had formal chemistry we had Alchemists, people who could concoct a libation to heal an ailment. This is the origin from which the word cocktail evolved. The modern Alchemist is a chemist, one version of which works to make pharmaceutical products.
Alchemy is an act, not a thing that you can put in a bottle. It is the art of putting the right combination of things into the bottle that is the alchemy. But what about the alchemy between two people? We can all recall people about whom it might be said they had great chemistry (alchemy). So too, recall some people who had bad chemistry between them. Some folks seem to have bad or good, chemistry in them, all by themselves. Oh
A prism deconstructs white light into colours. It can also reconstitute the coloured light back into white. Now that is alchemy. The ideas in many ancient alchemy texts form the basis of modern chemistry and influenced some of the greats like Isaac Newton. Many just somehow figure that it was olde and silly, but hey, we needed to start somewhere. At one time we swore the earth was flat
Alchemy is often not reversible. Try getting the cream back out of the coffee. In relationships, it can feel almost as hard to take back a word or action. We have the concept of forgiveness for this very reason. Without it we could not get back to where we were, Alchemy too can fade, like puppy love, intense and eventually forgotten. I love the alchemy result of smelling a flower. Changes me in just the right way
Surviving the Similkameen
Victor and Nada Stankovic were on a June, 1982 early morning trip for a camper holiday in Penticton. A few kilometers past Manning Park they rounded a steep rock cliff that looked down on a full-torrent, pounding Similkameen River about 10 meters below them. Just then one wheel hit a rock on the road, bouncing the vehicle out of control and catapulting it over the cliff. The camper rolled twice and landed upright in the middle of the raging river. The current began to carry it backward until it jammed on a huge boulder, with freezing water rushing into the cab. With great difficulty Victor managed to open one door slightly against the wild, 75 km/hr current so that they could squeeze through and reach the top of the camper. They were trapped. Any attempt to swim to shore would be suicidal.
A passing traveler saw them and phoned for help. Vacation-bound Norm Walker of the Canadian Coast Guard was flagged down. Park Rangers Peter Marochi and Peter Robinson were joined by RCMP Mark Oliver in seeking to help in the rescue effort as more than 50 passers-by watched. Even a stunned Mick Stankovic just happened to stop as he was passing through, only to find that it was his father and mother in the river. Someone urged Norm Lesage to bring his helicopter from where he was staying in a nearby cabin. Looking at the narrow passage-way between 30 meter lodgepole pines on either bank, he doubted his skills at performing a rescue. Victor and Nada Stankovic’s physical conditions were deteriorating. If rescue wasn’t achieved soon they would likely be lost to the current. Rescue attempts by ropes nearly caused the drowning of Victor and Ranger Robinson. It would have to be the helicopter for Nada. A very risky venture. A rescue harness was hastily fashioned as best they could and the two Rangers put their lives in jeopardy getting it to the camper. Three trips later, Lesage had successfully piloted the helicopter to bring all three off the camper. Five men: Walker, Robinson, Marochi, Oliver and Lesage, were awarded St. John Life Saving medals, RCMP Commendation for Bravery and the Governor General’s Medal of Bravery. Well deserved!
(Based on an article by Lynne Schuyler in the April, 1985 issue of Reader’s Digest.)
It may well be that dozens of volunteers in communities across B.C. and Canada are also serving heroically during this flood season. We are thankful for them.
I’ll be thinking about this when I pass that point on Hwy 3.