News

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Local Emergency Responders Brave Frigid Waters for Rescue Training

March 15, 2019 - 1:22pm

While many people turned up the furnace and stayed indoors during the recent cold snap, a group of local emergency responders jumped into the frigid waters of Rosen Lake for ice rescue training. “We had 13 participants this year, with some taking the training for the first time and others doing their required re-certification,” explains Elk Valley & South Country Rural Fire & Rescue Service Fire Chief Dave Boreen, who coordinated the training. “From learning vital assessment skills to understanding how to undertake self-rescue and group rescues, the two-day course is an intensive,...
Elko Firefighter Receives Prestigious Provincial Recognition

March 14, 2019 - 8:40am

A member of the Elko Fire Department has been selected as the Road Rescue Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer of the Year for 2019. Dale Hark is currently a Battalion Chief with the Department and Elk Valley and South Country Rural Fire & Rescue Service Fire Chief Dave Boreen says he is most deserving of this honour. “Dale is a trusted member of our Elko Fire Department who has earned tremendous respect for his commitment to volunteerism, his skill and his professionalism.” In addition to being a paid-on-call volunteer with the Elko Fire Department, where he responds and trains with members...
New Official Community Plan Process Gets Underway for Panorama Area

March 12, 2019 - 7:56pm

A new planning process will soon be underway for the Panorama Area. “The current Official Community Plan (OCP) was adopted in 1999 and was based heavily on a Concept Development Plan prepared by the previous owner of Panorama Mountain Resort,” explains RDEK Electoral Area F Director Susan Clovechok.  “Over the past twenty years there has been significant growth and change in the area, much of which is not recognized in the current OCP, so it is time to update it.” Recognizing the varied ownership, and that many property owners live outside the area, the RDEK will be adding a new online...
RDEK Approves 5-Year Financial Plan

March 12, 2019 - 7:54pm

The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) Board of Directors has adopted its 2019-2023 Financial Plan. The 2019 operating budget totals $32,436,112, which results in a 3% increase in taxation over last year; however, with a 1.3% increase in new assessment, the net effect is an overall 1.7% increase.  “This budget is the result of a lot of hard work by staff, the Board and other stakeholders,” says RDEK Chair Rob Gay. “We are committed to providing the region with needed services while being mindful of the impact to taxpayers and we’ve worked hard to maintain that balance in this...
RDEK Opens Its First Recycle BC Depot

March 04, 2019 - 3:05pm

The Regional District of East Kootenay opened its new Recycle BC Depot at the Kimberley Transfer Station today (March 4, 2019).  The Depot provides local residents with the ability to recycle a wide range of items that are not accepted in the local yellow bin program.  Some of the items that are accepted at the new Depot at the Kimberley Transfer Station include Styrofoam, #7 plastics, milk substitutes, zippered bags like Ziplocs and pet food bags, aerosol cans and more. CLICK HERE to view the specifics. Pictured Left to Right: RDEK Board Chair Rob Gay and City of Kimberley Mayor Don...
Regional District of East Kootenay Draft 5-Year Financial Plan Open for Review

February 21, 2019 - 12:10pm

The Regional District of East Kootenay Board of Directors is seeking public comment on its draft five-year financial plan. “The budget process at the RDEK is a detailed one and was started by staff back in October,” explains RDEK Board Chair Rob Gay.  “The RDEK Board has had its first review and staff will continue to meet with Directors, other municipalities, and various commissions over the coming weeks.  As part of this wider consultation, we want to hear from residents and property owners and encourage them to get a copy or contact our Financial Services Department to ask questions...
New Recycling Program to Be Piloted at Kimberley Transfer Station

February 14, 2019 - 5:17pm

The RDEK has reached an agreement with Recycle BC to operate a designated Recycle BC Depot, which will open up dozens of new recycling opportunities for Kimberley and area residents starting early next month. “Over the years, the recycling regulations in the Province have evolved to require producers of recyclable products to be responsible for the recycling and end-of-life management of those products,” explains Environmental Services Manager Kevin Paterson. “The new Recycle BC Depot we are establishing in Kimberley will provide local residents with the ability to recycle a wide range...
Windermere Fire Responds to Garage Fire

December 10, 2018 - 10:19am

It was an early start for members of the Windermere Fire Department as they responded to a structure fire call just after 5:00 this morning.   “When we arrived on scene, there was a fully involved fire in a detached garage,” explains Columbia Valley Fire & Rescue Deputy Chief Drew Sinclair. “Our firefighters did a great job of keeping the fire isolated to the garage so it didn’t spread to the nearby home or other structures.”   Seven firefighters and two pieces of apparatus responded to the blaze, along with support from BC Hydro, the RCMP and BC Ambulance Service.  There were no...
Lions Club Crafts New Washrooms for Wycliffe Park

November 23, 2018 - 3:46pm

Wycliffe Regional Park is now more accessible than ever thanks to the hard work of volunteers from the Cranbrook Lions Club who teamed up to build new wheelchair accessible outhouses. “Having these units allows all residents and visitors the opportunity to enjoy the park and not worry about needing to use the washroom”, says Jamie Davies, RDEK Recreation & Control Services Supervisor. The crew of eight Lions used materials purchased by the RDEK and the old Tembec mill as their workshop. In total, they spent about 40 hours crafting the structures, which are seven feet tall and six...
Tie Lake Dam Project Substantially Complete

November 20, 2018 - 11:39am

The Tie Lake Dam project is substantially complete and the new dam structure is in place. Construction started earlier this fall and included raising the height of the dam to allow for more freeboard; installation of seepage control and a new spillway. “The larger size of the dam has reduced the risk of the dam being overtopped by high water as has nearly happened a couple of times in the past few years,” explains Engineering Technician Brian De Paoli. As part of the project, the weir, known as a Cippoletti weir due to the v-shaped notch in its design, has been fenced. Although the...
Vandals Destroy Equipment at Wasa Transfer Station

November 15, 2018 - 10:37am

A senseless act of vandalism has the Regional District of East Kootenay looking for answers. Sometime between 6:30 PM on Tuesday evening and 8:30 AM Wednesday morning someone purposely lit an excavator on fire at the Wasa Transfer Station. “Our contractor had been at the site cleaning up the metal pile for a few days and each night parked the machine well away from the metal pile.  The operator worked until last light Tuesday evening and when he arrived back to finish up Wednesday, he found the burned out remains of the machine,” explains RDEK Solid Waste Superintendent Jim Penson....
RDEK Chair and Vice Chair Elected for 2019

November 09, 2018 - 11:29am

The annual election of RDEK Chair and Vice Chair was held at the Regional District of East Kootenay this morning and Electoral Area C Director Rob Gay will continue on as Chair for 2019. This will be the Electoral Area C Director’s eighth term as RDEK Chair. He has served on the Board since 2005. “I am excited for the year ahead,” says Gay. “We have a number of new Directors joining us around the board table and an ambitious work plan. I am grateful for the ongoing support of my fellow Directors and look forward to working closely with them and the RDEK staff to continue to move our...
RDEK Initiates First Step in Creation of Closure Plan for Old Kimberley Landfill

November 09, 2018 - 10:54am

The old Kimberley Landfill, located on land surrounding the present-day Transfer Station, was closed to public use several years ago; however, the site has not yet gone through a formal closure process. While a formal closure is still not in the works, the RDEK is taking steps to create a formal plan, which would guide a future closure process. “We just hosted an open house in Kimberley to help raise awareness about the need for a closure plan so that we are prepared when the time comes to formally close that old site,” explains RDEK Environmental Services Manager Kevin Paterson. “We...
Kimberley Transfer Station Re-Construction Begins

November 02, 2018 - 9:16am

The repair of the main building of the Kimberley Transfer Station is now underway as crews remove the exterior siding and begin the reconstruction process. The building sustained extensive damage when a fire broke out inside the structure in July.  “We have been working with the insurance adjusters, structural engineers and our construction contractor and have been given the green light to begin the re-construction,” says RDEK Environmental Services Manager Kevin Paterson. The first step in the re-construction is to remove the damaged siding before re-cladding the exterior. “We want...
Westview Fuel Treatment Project Continuing

October 18, 2018 - 12:26pm

This is the latest update on the ongoing wildfire prevention project that has been underway since late 2016/early 2017 in the Westview area southwest of Cranbrook.  Soil and weather conditions during various phases of the project have delayed its completion; however, we are on track for completion by the end of the year. As outlined on the map at the bottom of this update, the project is divided into four Treatment Units (TU): TU 1b - a 100m wide strip adjacent to the community TU 1, 2, 3 - the remaining 40 hectares beyond the 100m strip TU 1b was completed just over two...
RDEK Takes Over Ownership of Parr Utilities’ Assets

October 05, 2018 - 2:25pm

It was a full house Monday night as the RDEK and community came together to celebrate the purchase of Parr Utilities’ assets and a major step forward for the Windermere Treated Water project. “This is such a pivotal milestone for the community and the team that has worked on this project for so many years,” says Electoral Area F Director Wendy Booth. “Today is the result of lots of creativity, patience and hard work. I want to thank everyone who has been part of this journey from the community and the members of our Utility Advisory Commissions who’ve helped guide this project, to the...
Overnight House Fire in Tie Lake Quickly Actioned

September 18, 2018 - 3:44pm

Members of the South Country Fire Departments sprang into action overnight after a fire broke out a home in the Tie Lake area near Jaffray. “The homeowner and neighbours called in the fire immediately, our crews responded quickly and the wet conditions helped prevent the fire from spreading to the neighbouring trees. All of those factors helped contribute to the great outcome,” says Elk Valley & South Country Rural Fire and Rescue Service Deputy Chief, Michael Hockley. A total of 17 firefighters and 8 pieces of apparatus from the Baynes Lake, Jaffray and Elko Fire Departments...
Life-Changing Call for Elko Firefighters

September 03, 2018 - 12:26pm

After busy few weeks of emergency callouts, the members of the Elko Fire Department immediately jumped into action when their pagers went off in the wee morning hours of August 2nd. What they didn’t know at the time was that this call was going to change their lives forever. “We got the call that a first-time mother to be was in labour and that the baby was coming,” explains Elk Valley & South Country Fire Deputy Chief Michael Hockley.  “We arrived on scene and dad Ian was doing a great job. Minutes later at 1:56 am, a beautiful, healthy baby girl was born. It was surreal moment and...
Jaffray Fire Department Responds to Overnight Car Fire

August 30, 2018 - 6:09pm

Members of the Jaffray Fire Department were on scene of a car fire last night assisting the BC Wildfire Service. “The call came in just before midnight and the Wildfire Service requested our help as their crews aren’t equipped to battle vehicle fires,” explains Deputy Fire Chief Michael Hockley. RCMP and the Conservation Officer Service responded to the initial call on Highway 3/93 near Wardner and an Initial Attack crew was dispatched as the fire spread from the car to the surrounding grass. Jaffray responded with an engine and tender and 7 firefighters in total.  “The quick work by...
Evacuation Alert RESCINDED for Ta Ta Creek Area as Crews Make Progress on Lost Dog Complex

August 26, 2018 - 6:35pm

The evacuation alert that had been issued for 121 properties in the Ta Ta Creek area as a result of the Lost Dog Complex Fire has been rescinded. “The BC Wildfire Service has made great progress on the Lost Dog Complex Fire. The fire is largely contained and they felt it was safe to lift the evacuation alert,” says RDEK Emergency Information Officer Loree Duczek. “We are grateful to all the men and women on the front lines and behind the scenes who have been working to get the fire contained and would like to extend a special thanks to the residents who have been affected since the...

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