Winter 2018


Published by Penny Cote – Sproat Lake Director – Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District


Local Government Election Results:

2018 Local Government Elections for Sproat Lake Electoral Area Director at the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District results in Penny Cote re-elected for the next 4-year term of office. For official results see the ACRD website or call Wendy Thomson, 250-720-2706

Automatic Electronic Defibrillator (AED) Training

for Volunteers is on Saturday November 17th, 2018, by Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Department, Deputy Fire Chief, Rick Geddes. It is one of the most critical resuscitation programs for someone who suffers a cardiac arrest, which is supported by evidence provided by the BC Ambulance Service. Survival rates dramatically increase up to 5 times the rate before the AED program. There is an AED available at the Sproat Lake Community Hall for public use. In the winter of 2017, a life was saved at the Sproat Lake Community Hall thanks to volunteers that had taken the AED training and knew what to do. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to register for the AED training, please call Penny 250-724- 5040 or email at Registration is limited so call now to reserve your seat. We will offer training again in the New Year.

SLCA Group Water Test

for E.Coli and Total Coliforms is scheduled for
Monday, November 26th, 2018. See page 4 for details. June 25th, 2018 group testing found from 41 tests;
three positive tests for E.Coli and 25 tests clean of all bacteria. 2018 spring and summer residents experienced abnormal smells of metallic or fish odour and taste resulting in the SLCA Directors authorizing three raw water samples from residences on Stirling Arm Drive, Faber Road and Taylor Arm Drive. The tests results for all three samples were >200 total Coliforms. These tests are a snap shot of the water at the time of the test. Through investigation with Alberni Valley Health Officer and Ministry of Environment, it was determined that the results of the water samples were from a deep lake algae bloom. It was reported that Sproat Lake residents should not be concerned about the total coliform results that you received from your group testing – particularly if the testing was done during the height of the chrysophyte bloom as this would be the expected results. It is noted that you should always filter or boil raw water.

Roger’s Cell Tower:

Roger’s Cell Tower development along Faber Road on Island Timberlands’ property is in place and scheduled to provide cellular service to many Sproat Lake areas beginning in December 2018. This new service will open up economic opportunities for our residents and add a new level to the much-needed communications for our emergency crews and safety net for the public. Roger’s Communications message: “The tower would serve Rogers, Fido and Chatr Mobile customers as they are all under Rogers’ network. I should add that for 911 calls only, the tower would not only serve our customers but all carriers including Telus and Bell.”


Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Department (SLVFD)

Congratulations to the latest crew of Sproat Lake First Responders recently certified. The community is grateful to the all the Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Fighters, First Responders and community volunteers who provide the standard of service protection we all appreciate.
The Sproat Lake fire protection community will be receiving a new fire truck arriving spring 2019. As well, the SLVFD is investigating the provision of a fire boat and service for Sproat Lake.
The SLVFD promotes the Homeowners FireSmart Manual to fire proof your firesmart.pdf. Recommendations to clear driveway access are important for fire and rescue trucks to respond to emergencies! Keep your gutters clear of debris and your property clear of fuel sources in close proximity to the actual structure. Clean chimneys for the upcoming season. Be sure address signs are visible. For information or purchasing a reflective address sign please contact them at 250-724-1777 and leave a message or send an email to Remember, if we can’t find you, we can’t help!! The Sproat Lake Firefighters Association is also promoting WASP Gutter Mount Sprinklers and Brackets; designed to help protect a home or structure from wildfire. For more information or to purchase contact:

Ministry of Environment:

Ministry of Environment (MOE) to test Sproat Lake water as part of the British Columbia Lake Stewardship Society (BCLSS) level 3 monitoring program. Sproat Lake is actively testing level 1 for temperature and clarity will now be bumped up to level 3 testing water at 3 determined test site monthly for the next 3 years. The sampling will be collected by community volunteers and will include water sampling for additional parameters, as well as a site profile (temperature and dissolved oxygen measurements down through the water column). MOE provides all bottles and equipment and field measurements (site profile) as well as training. MOE pays for all lab analysis and staff will compile all the data and work with BCLSS to report. If you are interested in volunteering as part of this collection team, please call Penny at 250-724-5040 or email .

Somass Watershed Flood Management Plan

“The ACRD is working with the Province and Federal government to formalize funding details for the Somass Watershed Flood Management Project. A public announcement will be made when complete funding agreements for this project have been finalized.”
The project has gone out for RFP and closed on October 2nd, 2018. The project is looking for a completion between April 2019 and March 2020.

Flood Control Measures for Sproat Lake

Catalyst Paper has removed the “plates” on the low level fixed weir at the outlet of Sproat Lake, which is a part of its water license. During flood conditions, the lake level is about 10 feet above the top of the weir. Catalyst reports that the weir has no significant effect on the river flow or lake level at that time. The concrete weir has 3 slots, each about 2 feet wide. The weir slots will be managed, similar to what was routinely done prior to 2004. It is estimated that this will increase the river discharge flow by approximately 2.5 cubic metres/second (cms) (or a 1% increase relative to the peak flows).

The weir plates are a water conservation measure used for fisheries conservation through summer months. Removal of the plates in the early fall will allow the lake level to drawdown a bit faster, prior to the onset of heavy rains (estimated incremental change to 0.5 feet of lake level in one month). The measured Sproat River flow at the government gauging station increased by about 1.5 cubic metres/second (cms). At peak flow conditions in late November 2017, the measured river flow was 225 cms. The plate removal represented less than 1% increase in the river flow.

If you have any questions or concerns contact Larry Cross, Catalyst Paper, Port Alberni Division. Future hydrology study will assist in identifying the effects of the weir and the rock outcrop at the mouth of the Sproat River as part of the study.

Trail Expansion

Lakeshore Road and Faber Road Trail expansion is completed along Lakeshore Road. Further development along Lakeshore Road for incomplete areas is in planning stages to be constructed in 2019. Faber Road trail planned extension is near completion. This trail development costing approximately $90,000 is credited to an ACRD Gas Tax grant. Our local trail system is well utilized by the community residents and visitors. Continued new trail development is included in our Official Community Plan (OCP) and a priority for the Sproat Lake Parks Commission for safe pedestrian passage in our community.

Water Quality Protection

The Sproat Lake Community Association (SLCA) Lake Surface Zoning and Bylaws Committeecontinues to investigate regulations similar to Shuswap and Cowichan Lakes for reasons including Safety issues and Water Quality Protection. The committee is meeting with ACRD staff and the ACRD Board of Directors to discuss promoting and advertising the new Provincial Regulations disallowing DUMPING of grey or black water into BC lakes, policing boating, noise bylaw control, vacation rentals, and non-compliant use of property. A future public open session will be focusing on this discussion and asking the community for input and approval. For more information email

ACRD Woodstove Exchange Program

open until December 1st, 2018: It is time to exchange your old, uncertified woodstove (pre-1994) for a new CSA-EPA emissions-certified wood, pellet, or gas- heating appliance and save $400 – $700! Smarter burning, cleaner living. This offer applies to residents of the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District. Further information and how to apply visit the website.

Air Quality: Avoid backyard burning. Air quality has a direct impact on the health of humans and the environment. Learn how different emissions affect air quality and how we can make healthy air choices. Air pollution has a local and regional impact — such as ground-level ozone and wood smoke. It also has a wide-reaching, global effect — such as climate change and depletion of the ozone layer.

Real time air quality information is found at . Contacts are Earle Plain, Air Quality Meteorologist, Ministry of Environment 250-751-3171 and Valerie Wilson, Vancouver Island Health Authority

Communications 250-739-6303. Acceptable air quality is everyone’s right.

Invasive Species:

Invasive Species are an increasing problem in the community. Recent requests by residents to investigate the increase of lake weeds and removal is ongoing. If you identify an area at Sproat Lake with potential invasive species of plants or animals, please direct inquiries or sightings to your regional committee; Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast – Coastal Invasive Species by phone at 250-857-2472 or by email at or visit the website at

Garbage and Abandoned Wharves are All of Our Concern:

Thanks to the many volunteers who help each Fall to clean the beaches around Sproat Lake and Great Central Lake. If you replace and old wharf please ACT RESPONSIBLY!! It is illegal to dispose of old wharves on Crown Land and the Province may charge removal to the owner. Please dispose old wharves in an environmentally safe and sensitive manner.

Annual efforts alone are not enough to protect our water and environment. Report illegal Poachers and Polluters by calling 1-877-952-7277 (RAPP), Cellular #7277 or report violation on-line at the Ministry of Environment Conservation Officer Service Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) website. Thank you for your consideration of our water protection.


The Highway 4 – Kennedy Hill Safety Improvements Project: 24-hour travel
advisory updated daily: Toll-free at 1-855-451-7152 or online at Be prepared for planned traffic stoppage conditions daily and drive waits up to 30 minutes. Expect single-lane, alternating traffic for extended periods due to the construction work adjacent to Kennedy Lake, approximately 14 km northeast of Tofino/Ucluelet Highway 4 junction for 1.5 km. Check for updates!

Kennedy Hill Safety Improvements project will contribute to a safer and more reliable connection between Port Alberni and the west coast
of Vancouver Island.

Sproat Lake Winter 2018

SLCA will be offering E. Coli and Total Coliforms testing at a discounted group rate of $58 per test (approx. $72 value) on MONDAY, November 26th, 2018. Bottles and requisition forms are available for pick up at the ACRD office, 3008 Fifth Avenue, Monday to Friday between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm. Or, for THIS TEST ONLY, they can also be picked up at the Tseshaht Market at 7585 Pacific Rim Highway and/or Sproat Lake Landing at 10695 Lakeshore Road, during business hours until Monday, November 26th, 2018.

Water test samples are to be taken MONDAY MORNING, in provided sample bottles, kept cold and delivered with requisition forms and payment of $58 cash or cheque (made payable to SLCA), to the Sproat Lake Community Hall on MONDAY November 26th, 2018 between 9:00 and 11:00 am to be transported to the Maxxam Analytics in Courtenay. Early cooler drop off is available by calling Penny at 250-724-5040 or email for instructions.

This is a great opportunity to test water systems and filtration from lake sources or wells. If you do not have a filtration system on your drinking water, you are advised to boil your drinking water, as it is a raw water source. Water test bottles and requisition forms are available all year at the ACRD office during office hours Monday – Friday for individual testing and delivery to Maxxam Analytics in Courtney or Nanaimo.

Maxxam Analytics are experts in water quality and water system management. Maxxam Analytics offers complete water testing that can be added to the SLCA Group Bacterial Water Tests for $210. For further information go to .