City of Kamloops snow clearing to remain unstudied

By James Peters
January 23, 2018 - 4:17pm

KAMLOOPS — Kamloops council will not direct staff to do an in depth look at the city's snow clearing practices.

The motion put forward by Councillor Donovan Cavers in the wake of hundreds of complaints from the public was defeated 7-1 at this afternoon's regular council meeting.

Cavers had asked that staff be tasked with putting together various options to improve the city's service.

"The motion isn't asking us to invest in new equipment or more staff. It's to look at whether that's needed or not," said Cavers. "It could come back and say, 'No, it's not needed,' and then we'll just carry on. But we don't know right now. We're all just speculating."

While Mayor Ken Christian chided Cavers for a motion that seemingly implied city staff aren't working toward innovation and efficiency, Cavers said that's not the case.

"There's no intention of implying that staff aren't doing a good job with the resources they have right now," said Cavers. "I just want to ensure that they aren't falling behind as far as being able to accomplish what we have in our standards and timelines for being able to clear snow."

But Cavers couldn't convince his council colleagues, including Christian, who said the discussion ultimately comes down to money.

"We could, if we wanted to raise taxes through the moon, make sure that every flake of snow was diverted, melted or otherwise taken care of. But that's really not a reality that I think people really should expect, in terms of the level of services," said Christian.

"I would really like to have this discussion in May and see how many people think about what it was like to drive in December because I'll guarantee you most people are not going to be that concerned about it," said Councillor Dieter Dudy.

And Councillor Tina Lange invoked a 1990s Bill Murray comedy to say complaints rarely change.

"Every year around this time, I feel like it's Groundhog Day," said Lange. "All the complaints start coming in and we hear all the same things over and over again. For a couple of weeks every winter, it's difficult to get around."

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