Area P residents in two areas will be asked for input soon on hours and days of operation of eco-depots.
After a year of studying usage at the regional district’s eco-depots, staff submitted a report to the Solid Waste Management Committee, which supported the report’s recommendations and forwarded them to the board of directors.
The study looked at the number of people using the depots, and when, to figure out how many hours per week each site should operate.
The big South Thompson Eoc-Depot, used by residents of Pritchard on both sides of the river as well as other residents in the area, was the subject of a petition awhile back asking for year-round Sunday openings.
“The customer count sustained throughout the year does justify the Sunday opening year round,” the report said.
The report recommended an increase to 48 hours per week year round to accommodate Sunday opening.
The study showed the customer count for the Heffley Creek Eco-Depot is significantly lower in winter even with the current reduction in hours during the cold season.
Although I received a complaint about the depot being closed on Sundays during winter — as the resident considered it an inconvenience especially for McLure — the report said “very few complaints” have been received about the Sunday closure.
Although the report recommended that the hours per week at Heffley Creek remain unchanged, it also proposed that the public be surveyed on whether there are better days or times of day to open the site.
The Paul Lake staion’s hours per week will remain unchanged, and the public will be surveyed there as well on when best to open it. One of the survey suggestions will be to abolish summer vs. winter hours and keep them the same year round.
I like the idea of asking people for their opinions, and once the surveying is done, the hours will be firmed up by October.
While most customers will be affected positive by the overall changes, I voted against reducing the hours at eco-depots in some other parts of the region, and I also voted against the staff recommendation rejecting setting up share sheds.
I felt the arguments against share sheds weren’t strong enough, and that we should at least have established one as a pilot project.
However, one can’t always be on the winning side of a vote, and the board voted strongly in favour of the reports both on eco-depots and on share sheds.