Discontent City costs exceed $100,000 according to City of Nanaimo financial information. (News Bulletin file)

Discontent City costs exceed $100,000

City of Nanaimo estimates do not include legal fees or policing costs

Costs associated with Discontent City have exceeded $100,000.

The City of Nanaimo has spent at least $131,749 on Discontent City according to financial data obtained by the News Bulletin as a result of a freedom of information request.

The data does not include costs associated with the city’s legal action against the organizers of Discontent City, as that information was redacted. It also excludes policing costs associated with the camp.

Legal costs were not disclosed due to solicitor-client privilege, which is allowed under the province’s privacy act, according to the city’s response to the freedom of information request.

Discontent City was first set up on May 17 at Port Drive. However, a B.C. Supreme Court judge ruled on Sept. 21 that occupants of the homeless camp must vacate the property within 21 days.

The city spent $87,969 on indirect staffing costs associated with Discontent City between May 18 and Aug. 31, with one Nanaimo Fire Rescue employee earning $24,947 for 336 hours of work during that time period according to the data.

Meanwhile, direct costs associated with Discontent City have so far amounted to $23,749, which shows that security around tent city, contracted out to Footprints Security Patrol, cost $4,344, while the removal of the camp’s front gate cost $872. An expense marked as “damage to oil separator, dirty water discharge” cost taxpayers $3,915.

Between May 18 and July 9, litter pick up cost the city $8,562. Of that, more than $6,000 was attributed to “wages and fleet” allocation.

Compliance with a health order issued by the Vancouver Island Health Authority cost taxpayers $19,229 according to the data. VIHA had ordered the city to provide Discontent City occupants with municipal water, additional portable toilets and hand-sanitizing stations in early July, but the city initially refused to comply.

The city spent $6,127 on portable toilets and $7,417 on litter pickup between July 10 and Aug. 31 according to the data, which also shows that the cost of installing a water pipeline to the camp was $5,338. However, water usage at the camp between July 10 and Sept. 4 cost taxpayers only $347.

Nanaimo’s costs are low compared to the District of Saanich’s estimated costs associated with a recently closed homeless camp – between $746,000 and $923,500, according to the Saanich News. That total included policing costs estimated at $315,000 to $547,000.

Nanaimo Mayor Bill McKay said he was unaware of the estimated costs provided to the News Bulletin by the city, but said they do not surprise him. He said he could not provide an estimate on how much legal costs would be.

“Everything is extremely fluid at this point,” he said. “We haven’t received all the bills.”

Coun. Ian Thorpe said council has not been provided with figures on the estimated costs associated with Discontent City, but expects the costs to be higher after the camp is dismantled.

“I would expect the actual cleanup is going to be a very costly item,” he said.



nicholas.pescod@nanaimobulletin.com 
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram

 

Just Posted

Fired senior manager’s human rights complaint against City of Nanaimo can proceed to hearing

B.C. Human Rights Tribunal will hear Brad McRae’s case against the city

Syrian family in Nanaimo rebuilding following house fire

Family displaced by fire on Strickland Street had been planning to move later this summer

Police ask for tips about suspects who allegedly stole from Nanaimo furniture store

RCMP release images from surveillance footage following theft from The Brick

V.I. Raiders build ‘team environment’ at main camp

Nanaimo-based junior football team held camp this past weekend in Parksville

B.C. Ferries crew member’s medical emergency causes cancellations

One sailing from Horseshoe Bay and one sailing from Departure Bay cancelled Monday

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Nanaimo tubber sets all-time record at bathtub race

Justin Lofstrom completes course in fastest-ever time

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Family of missing B.C. senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

Police ask for help locating missing men last seen in South Surrey

Jeep that Richard Scurr and Ryan Provencher were in has been located unoccupied in Logan Lake: RCMP

Islanders have new cancer screening option with $6.5 M diagnostic suite in Victoria

The Gordon Heys Family PET/CT Suite was unveiled at the BC Cancer Centre-Victoria

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

Most Read