Flood recovery in Cache Creek colours 2015

Cache Creek Mayor John Ranta looks back over the highlights of 2015 in Cache Creek.

Who would have thought that a bit of rain could cause so much damage and long-lasting trouble for a little desert community?

The unexpected flash flood of May 23 is what Mayor John Ranta remembers most about 2015: “The overwhelming large impact of the devastating flooding caused by a rain storm on May 23,” he says. “That has pre-empted the thinking about the rest of the year because it was such a horrific event where nobody in the village was unaffected by it.

“I think the significant thing to me is that the community has demostrated a type of resilience that probably only occurs in small communities where interpersonal relations build over a period of years so that you can actually feel empathy for your neighbour and go and help them out when some disaster strikes.

“It’s not something I would recommend to any community going through a disaster to bring the community together – there’s got to be better ways to do it, but in my opinion, if there is a positive coming out of the disaster that has befallen us, it is the fact that we’re a stronger community that recognizes that we can overcome whatever challenge is thrown our way.”

Challenges came in more ways than the flood. Both of the Village’s senior staff members gave their notice. CFO Gayle Olsen was gone before the flood and CAO Dan Plamondon left a few days after.

“Every time there’s an administrative change, through no fault of the administrator, there are issues that fall through the cracks,” he says.  “It takes some time to recollect and re-establish the direction with a new administrator, so it does create some challenges.”

However, less than a month later, the residents turned out to celebrate the annual Graffiti Days.

“While it was a little bit challenging and probably more challenging than I know for the Graffiti Days committee, they pulled it off and the community looked like nothing had ever happened,” he said.

The same weekend Belkorp and Metro Vancouver held the official commissioning ceremony for the landfill gas utilization project which is now producing hydro power.

“It’s been a challenge to get that project completed,” he said, but now it’s one of only two station in BC that converts landfill gas into hydro electricity.

There may be an opportunity for the Village, he says, once Belkorp’s partnership with Metro Vancouver ends this year, to participate in revenues from the reciprocating engines by agreeing to purchase a share of the engines.

Most of the work of staff and council in 2015 has been directed at the recovery of the Village from the disaster

“We had a workshop in November and went through the budget,” Ranta says. “At the end of the day based on the impact of the flood, you wind up with a 2016 budget that’s $246,000 in the ditch.”

The Council is looking for ways to come up with the money to balance the budget and have identified serveral, from projects that can be cancelled or defered to revising landfill revenues.

The Village is having a town hall meeting on Jan. 25 at 7 pm in the community hall to discuss the budget and hopes that the public might have insight on how they can come up with more money.

Council is still focussed on their landfilling industry and the new 20-year Extension that is just waiting for the province’s final okay.

“This year I want to see the completion of the Operational Certificate for the Landfill Extension,” says Ranta. “That’s of critical importance to us. I’m optimistic that within six to eight weeks, completion will be announced.”

The Certificate gives the Village and Belkorp the opportunity to market the landfill’s capacity to potential customers, like the municipalities who are currently facing higher fees to ship their waste to the U.S.

Just Posted

Aerial view of a wildfire at 16 Mile, 11 kilometres northwest of Cache Creek, that started on the afternoon of June 15. (Photo credit: BC Wildfire Service)
Wildfire at 16 Mile now being held

Wildfire started on the afternoon of June 15 at 16 Mile, east of Highway 97

The Desert Daze Music Festival is doggone good fun, as shown in this photo from the 2019 festival, and it will be back in Spences Bridge this September. (Photo credit: Barbara Roden)
‘Best Little Fest in the West’ returning to Spences Bridge

Belated 10th anniversary Desert Daze festival going ahead with music, vendors, workshops, and more

Internet speed graphic, no date. Photo credit: Pixabay
Study asks for public input to show actual Internet speeds in BC communities

Federal maps showing Internet speeds might be inflated, so communities lose out on faster Internet

Fireworks are among the things now banned throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre, as the weather heats up and a dry summer looms. (Photo credit: Black Press files)
Category 2 and 3 open fires, fireworks now banned in Kamloops Fire Centre

Ban on certain types of fires and fire activities in place until Oct. 15

Cache Creek Village office, date unknown. (Photo credit: Wendy Coomber)
Cache Creek eyes water conservation bylaw as usage increases

Water bylaw was considered in 2019 but did not move forward

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
VIDEO: Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

St. Joseph's Mission site is located about six kilometres from Williams Lake First Nation. (Photo submitted)
Williams Lake First Nation to search residential school site for unmarked graves

St. Joseph’s Mission Indian Residential School operated from 1886 to 1981

Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lotto Max jackpot goes unclaimed again

42 of the 64 Maxmillion prizes of $1 million were won, the majority were sold in Ontario

FILE - This July 6, 2017 file photo shows prescription drugs in a glass flask at the state crime lab in Taylorsville, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Contaminants in generic drugs may cause long-term harm to DNA: B.C. researcher

Scientist says findings suggest high volume overseas facilities require strict regulation

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., on April 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Labour shortages, closed borders major obstacles to B.C. restaurant, tourism restarts

Industry expert says it won’t start to recover until international travellers can visit

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

Most Read