Quesnel City Council has begrudgingly agreed to help fund wildfire treatment prescriptions in two fuel management areas.
It is doing so despite the fact the work, 326 hectares on Marsh Road and 341 hectares in the Hangman Pit and Nazko Highway area, would be well outside city boundaries and despite the fact that the Cariboo Regional District isn’t helping to foot the bill.
Councillor Laurey-Anne Roodenburg…
“Never mind that it is protecting our community, they actually have residents that live in those areas, so there is a disconnect there somewhere.”
The overall cost is just under 137 thousand dollars and the City is on the hook for 25 percent of that which amount to $34,184.
Most, $26,430 of that, will be in an in-kind donation while $7,754 dollars will be cash from a wildfire recovery reserve account.
This only pays for the planning however and not the actual work.
That has Councillor Ron Paull concerned…
“If we bow to them and pay for the prescription, then they’re going to expect that we pay for the treatment.”
Paull would prefer to sit tight and not pay for the planning.
Councillor Shushil Thapar was also opposed to paying but the majority of Council felt that it had to be done in the interest of public protection.
Council will send another letter to the province however, asking that it respond to the first letter asking why it isn’t footing 100 percent of the bill.
This 667 hectares is just a fraction of the 27-hundred hectares that are identified in the Community Wildfire Protection Plan as a priority for treatment.