While he acknowledges the concerns of the Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district in regards to the Colliery dams, Steve Thomson said it's ultimately up to the City of Nanaimo to determine their future.
Thomson, the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations, was responding to a letter from the local school board requesting that he "take immediate action to address the risks to life and property posed by the unsafe dams."
The school board is particularly concerned about John Barsby Secondary School, which is located directly downstream from the dams, in the event of a flood.
Thomson said in a letter to the board that as the owners of the dams, it's ultimately the city's right to determine "which safeguarding option to use, provided it is acceptable and approved by the provincial dam safety officer."
Thomson's letter was received by the board before the city laid out a proposal late last week for renovations and repairs of the dams over the next two years as opposed to taking them out.
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