We received the following Hurley update from Sal Demare, SLRD Area A Director.
I have been corresponding with the Ministry Representative that is responsible for Forest Service Roads in our area this fall and winter. As everyone is aware there was funding secured for ditching and brushing the road and also to find road bed material to lay down the full length of the road. The total funding was approximately $200,000 with one of the contractors being local to the BRV. This funding came from the Forest Employment Funding stream. There is still more work left to do this spring from this funding. They are also looking for further funding for good quality road bed material from the same funding stream.
I had asked for Vehicle Count Data and was able to get it for September numbers only. The ministry took the road counter off of the Hurley in 2017-2018 as the numbers were stable. They actually started climbing after they took the counters out on the Hurley. However, the Sea to Sky Forest District had 2 counters on the Lillooet River FSR. One before the Hurley and one past the Hurley on the Lillooet FSR so they knew how many vehicles were going up the Hurley. There was as anticipated, a very large increase in 2020 due the COVID Pandemic as many of the Major BC Parks in the Sea to Sky Region and the Provincial Recreation Sites were closed and people wanted to get out of the populated areas which caused issues throughout Southern BC.
The Ministry has submitted Requests to the BC Government Treasury Board for changes to the funding formula for FSR Maintenance as the current formula is outdated. One of the elements they are looking to include is FSR’s that are used for public recreation or leading to recreation locations. The current formula only sees the Hurley receiving around $72,000 for the year and up to $15,000 of it is for opening it up in the spring. This is not enough to keep it safe and in good shape, with all of the traffic that is on it now.
The Ministry will be putting in 6 new vehicle counters on the Hurley in specific locations so data can be captured to where they are travelling to and from. This will help once and if the new funding formula is incorporated, so we can hopefully see more Maintenance funding in the future. I will keep everyone updated as more information is received.