White Rock Mayor Wayne Baldwin said he stands “to be corrected” after city-contracted machinery was spotted on West Beach the day after he told a resident the city was not allowed to have wheeled or tracked vehicles on the beach.
During a public hearing at the April 25 council meeting, a resident suggested the city “get some backhoes” onto the beach where logs and other debris had been swept ashore during winter storms.
“Just as an FYI, we’re not allowed to put tracked vehicles or wheeled vehicles on the beach, so that inhibits things considerably,” Baldwin told the speaker.
Monday, Baldwin told Peace Arch News there is a process in place by which the city can get permission from the Ministry of Natural Resources to access the beach with vehicles, as long as they stay on the rocky portion.
“A number of years ago, we had gone ahead and had vehicles crossing the sand… and the ministry had a bit of a fit and threatened fines on us,” Baldwin said.
Greg St. Louis, the city’s director of engineering, told PAN last week that the log-removal work had already been in the works prior to the topic coming up at council, and the city was waiting for low tides to access the shore.
The cleanup of West Beach wrapped up over two days, St. Louis said, with crews looking at how to access East Beach next.
“We haven’t done it in a number of years, and it really needs to get cleaned up down there,” St. Louis said. “Those logs do cause additional damage in the fall when they get thrown back up on to the shore.”