Mayor Kerry Cook is first up to make a presentation at today’s timber supply hearings at the Pioneer Complex, beginning at 4 p.m.
“It’s important that the province strongly consider the impact of timber supply discussions on communities, workers and businesses,” Cook said at Tuesday’s council meeting. “Municipal government should be directly involved in the release of information from the province to the general public when that information has the volatility to create economic angst.”
Williams Lake has recently gone through having lots of information coming at it with regards to the future and the uncertainty with forests, so this is an opportunity to set the record straight with what’s currently going on, Cook said.
“It’s important to ensure we have a sustainable forest industry in Williams Lake for all the people that are involved directly and indirectly in this industry.”
Another subject Cook will discuss is mitigation strategies.
She said they must be open to community stakeholders, be fact based, and encourage elements of certainty, not foster economic crisis and instability by propagating speculation and rumour.
“It’s important to have all the facts for the community to move forward.”
Because each area is unique, she said timber supply mitigation must be developed specific to the timber supply area and mitigation plans have to consider other users of the provincial land base.
Additionally, she said the plan must be based on principles of sustainability and should consider the long term, and not sacrifice future community health.
Coun. Surinderpal Rathor encouraged citizens to submit written presentations as well.
The deadline for submitting those is July 20.
“This is the time to get out and speak up,” Rathor said.