EDITORIAL: New sewage plan may have arrived too late for CRD

Last week's CRD announcement is reminiscent of a famous Bill Murray flick.

As someone said recently, last week’s announcement by the CRD’s sewage project board to shortlist McLoughlin Point and/or Rock Bay for potential treatment plant sites reminds one of the movie Groundhog Day. That’s when the days keep repeating themselves again and again until the characters get it right.

We can only hope that’s what is happening as the Capital Regional District steams toward the Sept. 30 federal funding deadline to have significant progress made on a plan for treatment. Both sites have been in play before, although the Township of Esquimalt did its best to take McLoughlin Point off the table.

A West Shore option was not featured in the recent announcement. But last week a group headed up by West Shore businessman Bill Beadle made a presentation to the sewage board, promoting their plan for Langford and Colwood to join forces on a separate treatment plant that helps achieve the CRD’s goal.

Beadle and consultant Patrick Lucey claim the alternate proposal will not only save West Shore taxpayers hundreds of dollars annually over the proposed CRD plans, it will remove the West Shore’s population growth from the equation in terms of the core plant.

While we’d like to acknowledge that Beadle has been actively pursuing a better deal on sewage treatment for Langford residents for the better part of two years, we wish this alternative plan had been ready for presentation to the CRD sewage committee much sooner than the 11th hour.

The sewage committee’s vote to pursue Clover Point and McLoughlin/Macaulay Point for possible treatment plant sites back in March happened rather quickly. But we fear that under the new board, inserting a separate West Shore option at this late stage of the game will be seen as arriving too late to be given a full airing and investigation.

It’s a shame, as potentially good ideas like this have been severely lacking on this massive project for some time.

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