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City seeks clarity on environmental application process

Council believes the timeline for the environmental application needs some clarity for the community.
Image Credit: Environmental Assessment Office
May 27, 2014 - 4:39 PM

KAMLOOPS - City council is asking those who understand the environmental application process and timelines around it to help ease public confusion by offering an information session for the people.

Coun. Arjun Singh says he has been getting a lot of questions from residents about why council has not taken a stand for or against the proposed Ajax Mine and when he tries to explain the application process as he knows it, it becomes apparent there is a lot of confusion or miscommunication about whether it is actually better to wait until the application is filed or not.

“I think it’s important for the community, as much as possible, to get clarity on that,” he says. “There’s a vacuum of information out there.”

Public Works Director Jen Fretz says the Environmental Assessment Office offered to come back with the representative who explained timelines to council back in 2012, and council was quick to say they would like to see them return.

Coun. Ken Christian says the project has had the ‘gestation period of three elephants’ and a little clarification wouldn’t hurt while Coun. Nelly Dever says she is a bit concerned it could make everything more confusing, though she agrees a broad based information meeting would be effective if it is held sooner rather than later.

“The sooner people understand the actual process the better,” Mayor Peter Milobar says, adding it could be even more important in light of the big announcement KGHM Ajax Mining has planned for Thursday.

Staff will be contacting the office to set up a meeting. It is not known at this point how long it will be before an information session can be held.

There is currently information about the proposed Ajax project on the city website, including a breakdown of the timelines of how the environmental application process works.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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