Full of shit Mayor John Steward of Pemberton says the village council could be in deep you know what if they were to grant the Howe Sound School District an occupancy permit for the new Pemberton Secondary School. The fate of the $13 million facility was on the table at a meeting held in Pemberton yesterday when Steward met with representatives from the Howe Sound School District, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs, Ministry of Environment and Ministry of Education. The problem, he says, is the potential for the village to face a $10,000 a day fine from the Ministry of Environment for exceeding their effluent discharge limit into the Lillooet River. Village council has refused to issue an occupancy permit for the new facility, scheduled to open in September, because Pemberton's sewage treatment plant is inadequate to handle the increased flows from the daily flushes of 350 students. The old PSS is outside village boundaries and was not factored into the sewage problem as it is on a septic field. "It would be very irresponsible for council or the school district to suggest that we break the law just to get the school hooked up to the sewage system," Steward says. Meanwhile, signs advertising new retail and condo space along Highway 99 and construction underway in the village are leading some to question council's reasons for continuing to grant building permits if the sewage treatment plant is running at capacity. Steward says the Highway 99 signs refer to projects that are "years away" while the commercial and retail construction in the village will have substantially less impact on the sewage system than the 350-student school, adding only 16 building permits have been authorized in the past 18 months. Jan Systad, Pemberton trustee on the Howe Sound School Board, says the school board "had no indication" any problems would arise with the opening of the school and a solution has to be sought as soon as possible in order to ensure that when it comes time to go back to school in the fall the new PSS is where it happens. "We have a considerable investment in that facility and it is state-of-the-art as far as technology goes," Systad says. "It would be horrible to not be able to move in when the school is complete." The old school has been packed up and the boxes are ready to be move to the new one. John Webb, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Education says the ministry provided the Village of Pemberton with $150,000 in 1993 to upgrade sewage facilities to make way for the new school flows. "After those funds were supplied we were unaware of any other problems until a few weeks ago," Webb says. "We were surprised to find out additional funds were necessary to sort out more sewage problems."