Area director worried about lack of consultation for cutblock near Vernon
By Charlotte Helston
(JENNIFER STAHN / iNFOnews.ca)
November 25, 2015 - 8:00 PM
VERNON - A local politician has concerns about a proposed cutblock near Vernon — primarily that he wasn’t even notified about it.
Electoral area C director Mike Macnabb says he wasn’t consulted about four proposed cutblocks covering a total of 261 acres on Vernon Mountain, even though the land is in area C.
Macnabb has learned B.C. Timber Sales sent letters to local government officials in other electoral areas, but due to ‘an oversight’ didn’t notify him of the project, or the opportunity to provide input, which is due by Nov. 28.
“The lack of due diligence in making sure the right people are contacted worries me,” Macnabb says. “In my view, if it was an oversight we can rectify that for the future and that’s good. At the same time, I have a feeling there’s perhaps a level of arrogance in some of the provincial ministries to just go ahead and do what they want without full consultation with the public and taking their view into consideration.”
That lack of consultation was seen in the Cherry Creek logging project in Cherryville, he says, and also with a controversial transportation plan to reconfigure the Stickle Road and Highway 97 intersection.
“I don’t think they would do something maliciously, but I do believe they have an obligation to involve the public. They have to be open and transparent,” Macnabb says.
Macnabb will be requesting an extension of the Nov. 28 input deadline and requesting more details about the project.
“My concern would be this is very close to a community, a fairly large community,” he says. “(The City of Vernon) is worried about the viewscapes, I’m more worried about the impact on adjacent landowners, people downstream that might be affected.”
He says an area on Vernon Mountain used to be used as a forestry demonstration area, but that signage appears to be gone now.
“People took great pride in showing off the best forestry practices,” Macnabb says.
The City of Vernon is also requesting more information about the project.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015