May 14, 2013 - 11:40 AM
Council continues to gather information as members prepare to assume positions on the Ajax debate. This time the information comes in the form of a petition with more than 1,600 signatures in support of the proposed mine.
The petition, set up through Change.org, asks city council to consider the development of the mine. The debate is expected to take place later this year or in early 2014.
“When done within the guidelines of the government assessments this project must be considered,” the petition reads and then is followed by 1,673 signatures.
Petition organizer Caroline King noted of 1,624 signatures collected during a 27-day period – the same duration as the oppose Ajax petition – 70 per cent are from the Kamloops region. King submitted only the names and locations of those who signed and did not include any comments, unlike the opposition submission, which included all the comments. Comments in support of the mine mostly focused on the job and economic creation the mine could bring to the region.
The opposition presented a petition to council as information in April with 2,418 signatures with more than 60 per cent of those from the Kamloops region. Many of those who are not from the region left comments they have ties to Kamloops - whether they grew up here, want to retire here or have family here. Many said they are concerned over the health and environmental issues around having an open pit mine so close to the city.
Mayor Peter Milobar said he likes the Change.org platform, which allows people to leave comments, which allows council to better understand why people feel as they do.
On the whole, council has refused to take a stance on the project until all the information has been presented, which will come in the form of the environmental assessment. KGHM Ajax Mine representative Yves Lacasse said he expects the assessment to be complete in September, at which point a six month review period will take place. During the review the city plans to hold a public information session.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013