A Prison in Summerland, BC? No: Oliver.

Correctional facility approved for Oliver, BC

Archive for April 2013

A prison in the heart of wine country

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Prison graphic re prison proposed for Oliver BC

Written by summerlandbc

April 4, 2013 at 3:49 pm

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Inmates will stay in the community

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BC Corrections could use some correcting

In a post from June 16, 2011 titled “BC politicians on the downside of prisons”, ex-Mayor Gordy Robson of Maple Ridge tried to warn us, that BC Corrections were not upfront when making promises to the communities in which they had facilities, and in fact the Ministry of Public Safety had violated their ‘good neighbor agreement’ with Maple Ridge.

Gordy Robson had also said that “. . . whatever promises they are making now, they will not live up to.  The evidence here in Maple Ridge is that Corrections will not admit or honor the agreement they had, and that is very disturbing”. 

Inmates DO stick around

In contrast to Corrections BC’s claim in their fact sheet that convicts don’t stick around when released, Mr. Robson also said that released inmates in Maple Ridge are just dropped off at the bus station and some decide to stay.

The following is the Q and A from the official Okanagan Corrections fact sheet put out by the Ministry of Public Safety:

Q. What happens to the inmates when they are released? Where do they go?

A. It is important to realize that in most cases, inmates are not from the area the correctional centre is located and want to return to their home communities. Sentenced inmates are always given a bus ticket to return to their community of origin upon completion of their sentence.

We already knew this was a crock from having spoken to several correctional officers. One CO from Surrey told me that remanded individuals and prisoners are only given bus tickets from Surrey Pretrial, IF they know to ask for one. This is entirely contrary to what Brent Merchant from BC Corrections had been telling us all along.

The correctional officer also told me that if a remanded inmates trial came up at 4:00pm and the paperwork didn’t come through until 10:00 that night, that by law they are forced to release them even if the buses have stopped running for the night.

Where are they going to go at 10:00 at night in Oliver with no buses running? For one, they might steal your car, which according to the CO’s we talked to, is a common occurrence.

MLA Terry Lake says “inmates stay in the community”

Feb 6, 2012 KFJC-TV  Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Terry Lake praised this morning’s announcement, [re the Oliver prison], saying it will be a benefit for the crowded Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre. Lake says it’s a tough process to locate a facility like a jail, with some seeing the positives and others, the negatives…

Lake says both he and Mayor Peter Milobar have long been concerned about crowding at KRCC, saying when inmates are released, they often stay in the community and put pressures on local police.

Written by summerlandbc

April 4, 2013 at 11:26 am

Kamloops facility manager says prison is an ‘energy pig’

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“The correctional centre is a heavy user of electricity, gas and water.”

April 2013 – We had originally posted this in August of 2011. Brookfield, who are now a contender (oh let’s not pretend…. they will be the winning bidder re the prison in Oliver… for building it on a P3 basis), had comments on their website asserting that the correctional centre in Kamloops was an “energy pig”. Now that we know that the town where the prison will be built is Oliver, should that not cause some concern in regards to the already existing water shortages? A prison in a desert? (Apparently the comments by Bruce Cline are no longer on the BLJC website.)

Original post:

Brookfield Lepage Johnson Controls (BLJC) is the company in charge of maintaining the Kamloops Correctional facility. Bruce Cline works for BLJC and is the Maintenance Team Leader and acting Facility Manager for the Kamloops Correctional Centre.

"Kamloops prison is what we refer to as an energy pig"

On the BLJC website, under the category of ‘Facilities Management’ are some of Cline’s observations about running the Kamloops prison:

The correctional centre is a heavy user of electricity, gas and water.

“It’s 24/7, so the building itself is what we refer to as an energy pig,” says Cline.

The facility has double-bunked each of their living cells except for the segregation cells to meet demand, says Cline.

“The load on the building has gone up substantially,” he adds

Cline says that jails are unique in that they’re large, they’re crowded and they demand energy at all hours of the day and week. Few buildings in his portfolio match those needs.

“It’s different where you’ve got a facility where you’ve got people living 24/7, the fuel consumption and wear and tear on the building is probably triple what it should be on a standard commercial office building,” he says.

Water Issues

In light of Cline’s comments about the energy use of a prison, it makes more sense to build the Okanagan facility in a city the size of Kelowna where the impacts are less dramatic than they would be in a town the size of Summerland Oliver?

We They already have a taxed water system that on many levels is dysfunctional. Why would we they want to make that worse?


Written by summerlandbc

April 3, 2013 at 8:00 am

Posted in Recent Posts