Council’s silence on the gravel pit issue is no real surprise

By David F. Rooney

Letters about the Westside Gravel Pit sent to it by the North Columbia Environmental Society and anti-pit campaigner Stuart Andrews were referred to a variety of committees on Tuesday by City Council.

Mayor David Raven and the councilors did not discuss the contents of the letters, which urged Council to oppose renewal of the gravel pit’s licence because of its environmental effects and health risks. (Click here to read the NCES letter and click here to read Stuart Andrews’ letter.)

Instead, they referred the letters to the City’s Environment, Health, Public Works and Administration committees. Those committees will typically read and review the letters and then send them back to Council with comments and recommendations, if any, for further action.

Both Andrews and NCES director Jody Lownds, one of the co-authors of the NCES letter, were present for the Council meeting in case councillors wished to ask them about their concerns. However, there were no questions, indeed no discussion at all, about the letters.

That didn’t surprise either Lownds or Andrews who indicated afterwards that they’ll be watching to see what action — if any — is taken by the City Council committees.

Lownds also said she believes the two letters are being sent to provincial Health Minister Terry Lake.

Meanwhile, Lownds and Andrews have both spoken with CBC Radio about the gravel pit issue. You can hear an MP3 clip of their comments on the CBC’s Daybreak program by clicking hereonline-gravel-pit.

You can click here to read a Current story about Andrews’ letter.

You can also click here to read a Current story about the NCES letter.