Williams Lake city councillor Jason Ryll shows off one of the new Green Lid bins staff and council are using at City Hall for compostable items. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Williams Lake city hall taking steps towards being green

Staff are using compost buckets on site to collect for the Potato House Project’s compost program

During the city council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 27, Coun. Jason Ryll showed off one of the new Green Lid bins city hall staff are using for compostable items.

Mary Forbes, with the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society and the Waste Wise program director in the city, has been assisting the City with its desire to be green, she said.

“The problem is currently there is very little institutional recycling available, everything we have is for residential,” Forbes told the Tribune.

Recycling B.C. is for the curbside pick up in Williams Lake and there is recycling at the Cariboo Regional District’s transfer station on Frizzi Road, she added.

“We have recycling for schools, businesses and city hall for cardboard and paper, but there isn’t a market for pick up of anything else.”

Forbes has been talking with City Hall about creating a program that is higher level than a recycle bin.

“They are going to start collecting their compost and bringing it to the Potato House and the buckets they are using were designed in Canada by a couple of young entrepreneurs. It’s cardboard that is too contaminated to be recycled into new paper for fibre because it is too dirty or wet. They get all of the culled cardboard from the recycling program, line it on the inside with a natural fatty acid and it doesn’t break down with just water in it.”

Each compost bucket will be reusable several times and then once it is no longer feasible to use it, it can be tossed in the compost bin at the Potato House as well.

When Ryll showed the other council members the bucket, Coun. Marnie Brenner asked if anyone can take compost from the Potato House.

Responding to that querie, Forbes told the Tribune “no,” that people need to contact the Potato House Project through the Facebook page.

“We are keeping really tight metrics on how much compost is coming in and how much is going out,” Forbes explained. “We respond really quickly to Facebook requests and will meet them there and measure out exact quantities of screened compost which is what we make available to the public by donation.”

Forbes is the volunteer executive director of the Potato House as well.

Read more: Columneetza students organize Do Something Day activities

Following a request from the Recycling Council of British Columbia, council council unanimously approved Oct. 21 to 27 as “Waste Reduction Week” in Williams Lake to recognize the City’s efforts to conserve resources, protect the environment and educate the community.

Council highlights

Bus shelter at Boitanio Park

Council discussed inquiring about funding for a shelter to replace the one that was removed at Boitanio Park. Council made mention of the concerns that were had when the shelter was originally in place, and if an alternate solution such as leaning posts would be better suited. With the unanimous approval to move forward, Council stated that the good news is that there will be something in place, but what that looks like is yet to be determined.

Soil removal bylaw

Council discussed the recommendation by the General Governance Committee to support the proposed new Soil Removal Bylaw and direct staff to open for public consultation. Council briefly raised some concerns about some of the restrictions in the bylaw that developers might see as a minor issue to new project. However, it is expected that the public consultation would address these issues as needed.

Development procedure bylaw

Council discussed approving the recommended changes to the Development Procedure Bylaw and confirming that it would be brought before the public for comment before being adopted. Council wanted to make sure that developers themselves were engaged and feedback was retrieved directly. The public consultation process before the second and third reading will take approximately two to three months.

With files from council highlights provided by the City’s corporate engagement officer



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