The participation numbers for Telkwa’s curbside recycling program in 2018 are in and were once again low. Gordon Davies, the town’s director of operations reported to council on Jan. 22 that of the 523 households eligible for recycling pickup, an average of 141 took advantage of the program per collection day, a participation rate of 27 per cent.
“We have still continued to struggle with participation rates among our residents,” Davies said.
The total quantity of recycling was 26,635 kg, only 38 per cent of the minimum Recycle BC target for the village, but an increase of 28 per cent over 2017.
Coun. Matthew Monkman speculated that the actual volume may be higher because some residents are taking their recycling to the dump themselves.
Mayor Brad Layton was also curious about the volume being deposited directly into the recycling bins at the transfer station by residents, but suggested education is the key to getting the numbers up.
“People are afraid of it because they’re told you can’t do this and you can’t do that,” he said.
Davies said the town is engaged in discussion with Recycle BC to have an educational booth at the Bulkley Valley Exhibition or Spring Trade Show.
Layton also suggested the introduction of tipping fees at the dump—which he expects will be introduced within the next couple of years—could encourage uptake of curbside recycling.
Village council has agreed to allow the Telkwa Arts and Culture Program/The Ark to use the community hall for free to put on a magic show.
Coun. Rick Fuerst inquired if the Village had a policy regarding providing use of the hall at no cost.
Mayor Brad Layton noted in-kind donations are budgeted so it is up to council to decide on an event by event basis whether it is appropriate.
“I wish we could recover more of our costs, but that’s what [the hall] is there for, we want the community to use it,” the mayor said.
Telkwa will submit a joint application with Smithers for $50,000 in funding from the Union of BC Municipalities Community Emergency Preparedness Fund for equipment and training.
Fire Chief Laurence Turney explained the money would be used purchase a radio system that will integrate cell phones, radios and landlines; purchase weather stations; and provide emergency operations training for Telkwa and Smithers staff.
He also noted Smithers has agreed to provide overall grant management for the application.
“That works for us,” said Coun. Rick Fuerst.
Nominations are open for the Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education.
“The awards recognize all outstanding education professionals who have made exceptional contributions to benefit their school, students and their communities,” stated a letter to Telkwa council from Rob Fleming, the provincial education minister.
Any BC citizen can nominate an educator for the the award.
“I think as council we don’t directly deal with this, but I think we should put it up on our webpage,” said Mayor Brad Layton.
The deadline for nominations is March 31, 2019.