Hartland biosolids centre solution leaves a bad taste

Reader questions whether provincial and federal funding will come for sewage project

I am annoyed to learn the sewage biosolids plant could be built at the Hartland Road dump.

Seaterra is just another example of re-branding a sewage concept with a “no-money-back guarantee.” Some Capital Regional District directors are being misled by a Pied Piper tune – acting like lemmings falling over a cliff in pursuit of promised provincial and federal funding. The promises are as thin and transparent as cheap bathroom tissue, all in pursuit of a byproduct consisting of sludge, herbicides, insecticides and toxins.

The $783 million quotation is likely just the down payment. Consider past financial miscalculations for the CREST radio system, McTavish Road Interchange, CRD kitchen scraps program, Viewfield Road treatment site and other infrastructure upgrades.

There are no costs to CRD politicians who make bad decisions, other than losing their election. For those who win, there will be self-regulated bonuses, no-fault clauses and amnesty for cost overruns likely hidden by in-camera confidential discussion. Taxpayers must still pay increased property taxes when municipal services are further reduced.

The CRD has chosen to ignore the wisdom of experts like Dr. Shaun Peck. Instead, it is relying on advice from interest groups and lobbyists such as the David Suzuki Foundation.

Several less expensive tertiary sewage treatment plants should be built throughout the Capital Region, using Dockside Green as their model.

If CRD proceeds with their expensive obsolete plan, there will be fewer private projects attempted, owing to new higher taxes, fees and a growing to-do list from all three levels of government. That leads to less disposable income for local residents and businesses.

Fortunately, at local coffee shops, there is an expanding group of seniors in disagreement with the CRD’s decision. They are well-informed voters.

The CRD decision for secondary treatment, with twin pipes from Hartland to McLoughlin Point is an unthinkable, undrinkable solution.

Art Bickerton

Saanich

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