Cariboo Chilcotin MLA Lorne Doerkson is calling for the establishment of a Rural Infrastructure and Renewal Fund.
In the Legislature on Monday, MLA Doerkson delivered a speech calling for the fund.
“It’s hard to know where to begin Mr. Speaker. When it comes to the crumbling road infrastructure in our rural part of the province” Doerkson said “I can assure you that is one thing to look at the level of destruction in photographs. But is quite another to see it in person and witness firsthand how people’s lives are impacted, right on their own property. Just in the past three years, we’ve seen how wildfires devastate the landscape in the summer, and by spring we see how this contributes to extreme freshets and all the damage left in their wake.”
Doerkson also read letters from constituents dealing with the devastation from flooding.
Alex B., Williams Lake:
“You have to do something, I spent nearly $1,000 pumping my septic out. I have to set my alarm to awaken me multiple times throughout the night to suck out the water that is entering my basement. We can no longer use the water in my home because it has nowhere to go. I’m borrowing a friend’s place to do laundry, baths, and showers for my children. I would have called you a few weeks ago, but I’m absolutely exhausted. You have to do something, please help us. It’s not just our house but so many others in our neighbourhood.”
Lacey, Williams Lake
“We’ve now had to move from our house, we had hoped the water would stop, we had hoped the house would stop shifting, but it won’t. We can’t live in the house anymore, it’s unsafe. We can’t risk it anymore, the cracks are becoming large enough that it is too concerning. We have not been able to find a place to rent, and we have been using a friend’s house that have gone away for the summer, but after that, we have no idea what we’ll do.”
“I could give so many more examples,” Doerkson said after reading the letters, “I hope that you see the point and that the house understands the issues. I will continue to bring these examples to this place until they are heard.”
On top of a Rural Infrastructure Renewal Fund Doerkson also calls for the restoration of a minister whose sole responsibility is Rural Infrastructure.