Since the last AGM progress on the dealings with BC Hydro to service our area has continued. There are several issues to deal with and I will outline them for you.
The first is the cost of the extension of the power line to LLE. This cost is estimated at $400,000 and hydro expects that we will bear most of this. At present, there are 111 poles required and we will be granted only 16 poles, which means that we would have to pay about $340,000 for this line. Our position is that there are so many potential users that would eventually become paying customers that Hydro should be willing to subsidize the major portion of this extension from Joffrey Creek. We are attempting to get them to revise their policy regarding grants to users to lower our portion of the extension.
The second issue is the financing of the local distribution system. The cost for some lot owners would impose an impossible burden. The Regional District has been approached regarding a bylaw, which would enable them to borrow the construction costs on our behalf. This cost would be amortized over a 20 year period and bring the yearly cost to a bearable level. They have outlined the process that we have to follow in order for this to become a reality.
The question is frequently asked about whether or not there is a cheaper alternative to provide electricity to the subdivision other that the expensive underground system that is under consideration at this time. The answer is a simple no. Hydro specified that they would not consider any system that involved overhead wiring; the reason being the treed nature of the area and the difficulty of servicing the estate. Clearing is considered a short-term solution as trees grow back very quickly after being removed.
Efforts are being made to work with the residences of Twin One to see if they might be interested in electrical power. There is a proposed expansion of HJD and the possibility that they might support the power line extension financially. Our own needs for supplying power for the new water system are also important. Once installed electrical pumps are cheap to operate and maintain.
The efforts of the committee are to bring the cost per lot owner down to a level that we feel we can support. Until there has been some real progress on this front the question of electrification and when it will come will remain unanswered. You lot owners will be informed of any new events.