Human-bear interactions in Golden were way down this year compared to previous years thanks to the town's program that provided bear-resistant bins to every household, and conservation officers want the city of Revelstoke to consider doing the same.
This year two bears were killed in Golden by conservation officers, compared to 10 in Revelstoke, which is a high since B.C.'s Conservation Officer Services starting tracking statistics in 2017. Conservation Officer Sgt. Glen Kruger, based in Invermere, said that historically Golden and Revelstoke have similar bear encounter numbers per year.
The town of Golden spent "upwards of between $250 and $300,000 to outfit all residences with the bear resistant bins," said Chief Administrative Officer Jon Wilsgard in a phone interview.
The town raised the money through its levy on curbside pick-up utility fees that was enacted in 2012 as a Container Replacement Reserve. Each resident pays $177 per year for curbside pickup. In Revelstoke the fee is $132 per year.
The town of Golden bought the bins and distributed them to its approximately 1,000 residences in three phases: in 2016, 2018 and 2020.
"There was a marked decrease in bear activity within the community, particularly where we rolled them out," Wilsgard said.
Revelstoke Mayor Gary Sulz said over the phone that he's curious about Golden's program, especially the cost, and if the bins function in the winter time, but he said he hasn't had time to look into it.
StokeFM emailed and called the City of Revelstoke multiple times to ask about its waste management plans, but did not get a response back.
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