Following two motor-vehicle incidents and a fatality on the Trans-Canada Highway Tuesday night, Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Doug Clovechok said his blood pressure is rather high today.
“Nobody in this province has to deal with this on a regular basis more than the people in Revelstoke. It is affecting people’s livelihoods. It is dangerous. And obviously, people are dying,” said Clovechok. “The ministry is completely ignoring people’s needs out here. It is like we don’t exist. It is not acceptable.”
Clovechok said his office has been inundated with e-mails from local constituents today and is currently drafting a letter to the minister of transportation and infrastructure, who he will be addressing on snow removal, Three Valley Gap, the Trans-Canada Highway, and Highway 23 South in Victoria when he arrives next week.
He also praised the first responders, RCMP, and sent his condolences to the families of the two individuals who lost their lives on the highway this week.
Clovechok addressed the minister and premier on the Trans-Canada and Three Valley gap in November, and said it’s just not a priority for them.
“I’m hearing words like ‘accelerate’ and ‘expedite’ around the expansion of the Trans-Canada, but if you look at their timelines, they are the same ones that we had when we were in government. And I said to the premier: ‘that’s not expedite, that’s status-quo,’” said Clovechok.
Clovechok said that the NDP government isn’t concerned with the needs of local constituents, and that if this were to happen in the Lower Mainland, the response would have been immediate and deliberate.
“This is one of the highest snow-belt areas in the province. They know that.” said Clovechok.
“Yet they won’t give us the resources we need. If I have an opportunity I will bring this up to the premier himself, I will. We here in the Columbia River-Revelstoke are sick and tired of this.”
Clovechok said his immediate response would be to get more trucks on the road, with long-term goals like twinning the highway at Three Valley Gap.
He said the resources are just not available right now, and it doesn’t just affect people who are travelling, but our industry as well.
Clovechok said lumber mills can’t move their products.
He also expressed his concerns about Highway 23 South.
Clovechok will address the minister of transportation and infrastructure next week, and the NDP government will be presenting its budget later this month.
Clovechok said he will be going through it thoroughly to ensure the needs of local constituents are heard and met.
There have been two fatalities on the Trans-Canada in the last week.