Merritt mayor hopeful after meeting with transportation minister

By Chad Klassen
March 2, 2018 - 5:13pm Updated: March 2, 2018 - 7:05pm

MERRITT — Merritt Mayor Neil Menard just returned home from Victoria and said his meeting with Transportation Minister Claire Trevena on Wednesday was productive. 

Menard met with three NDP cabinet ministers while in the provincial capital, including Trevena. He noted his concerns about highway maintenance on the Coquihalla were received well. Menard even noticed a difference from his trip down to the coast and the drive back to Merritt. 

"I think they did [hear us]," he said. "When we went down on Tuesday, all the way down, right from here to Hope, we met one VSA truck, one highway truck, going north with the blade up. On both sides of the road, you couldn't see the fog line, it was snow-covered, basically one track going down the road. When we came home yesterday after the meeting, we saw six trucks out on the road, plows down with the sanding and equipment they have one grader, the day after we had the meeting. Somebody must've made a phone call."

Menard hopes it's a sign the government is listening. All the items he and area residents are concerned about were discussed. 

"Plowing, snow removal, proper stuff put on the highway, sand, getting down to the black pavement. We talked truckers, and no disrespect to truckers, but some of them don't have proper training, proper mountain training, know how to put chains on, using proper chains," he said.

"A whole list of stuff that to her made a lot of sense. She listened and at the end of the day after our meeting she didn't say 'I'll get back to you,' she said 'that's very good. We're very concerned. We're getting feedback about having to do something out on the highways.'"

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