Public to be included in recycling depot talks
Merritt city councillors voted to involve the public in discussions about how to enforce operating hours at the Recycling Depot on Main Street.
According to a report from Public Works Superintendent Darrell Finnigan, Collettville residents near the depot have voiced concerns about establishing and enforcing operating hours at the recycling depot.
Council is currently considering possible solutions including installing automatic fencing or hiring a contractor to manually open and close the current gates that were installed in 2011.
Installing an automatic gate would cost $19,940 plus tax, and the TNRD has agreed to cover 50 per cent of the installation. The automatic system would cost the City an additional $1,000 per year for maintenance.
On the other hand, hiring a contractor to open and close the gates would cost $5,580 annually.
Finnigan’s report discusses the pros and cons of each, but recommends that council defer the decision to the 2013 budget process since council has not budgeted any money for the project.
However, at the June 26 regular council meeting Coun. Alastair Murdoch recommended seeking the public’s input at a committee of the whole meeting, rather than deferring the matter to budget.
“I’d like to get all the people together at a committee of the whole meeting and let’s see if we can work something out,” he said.
Coun. Dave Baker was also hesitant about deferring the issue.
“This has been going on for a long time,” he said. “It was a hot topic when I first ran for council four years ago.
“In the meantime we have to look at some other options.”
Merritt CAO Matt Noble said he didn’t feel the issue was a priority because there have been no recent complaints. However, Mayor Susan Roline suggested that residents had stopped complaining because the City had indicated councillors were considering possible solutions.
Council unanimously agreed to refer the issue to a committee of the whole meeting.