Penticton Council Highlights

The following is a snapshot of what transpired during the Oct. 7, 2013 meeting of Penticton Council.

Fire Prevention Week

Penticton Fire Chief Wayne Williams presented Council with a video and information about Fire Prevention Week. This year's theme is “Prevent kitchen fires.” Cooking safety is paramount, as research shows that the kitchen is the location where more fires ignite, more so than any other room of the house. Chief Williams outlined the department's activities to increase awareness and education during the week, including a travelling school production relating to fire safety.

2014 Performing Arts B.C. Festival

Lorna Bull, Director of Performing Arts B.C., provided Council with an overview of the 2014 Performing Arts B.C. Festival, which is set to be held in Penticton. Performing Arts B.C. and Penticton Kiwanis Music Festival Provincial Host Committee anticipates more than 1,000 youth and adults to the region and over $660,000 to the community in economic activity. Concerts and competitions will be open to the public, and 25% of funds raised will go toward a legacy fund to support the Penticton Kiwanis Music Festival.

Tax exemptions considered

Council considered a schedule of permissive tax exemptions for non-profit and community groups. According to the Community Charter, before Oct. 31 of any year, Council may exempt land or improvements from taxation by way of bylaw. The Permissive Tax Exemption Policy endorsed by Council requires applicants to provide financial information and proof the organization is in good standing with the Society Act.

Council approved Schedule A and Schedule B, which allowed for 100 percent permissive tax exemptions allowable for those organizations that qualify.

Liquor service hours

Council received a report that indicated Opal Nightclub at 535 Main St. would be seeking a permanent change in hours from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. Monday to Sunday, to noon to 3 a.m. Monday to Sunday. Council directed staff to proceed with the public consultation process and report back to Council at the Nov. 4 meeting.

Tax revitalization agreements

Penticton Council endorsed the tax exemption agreements with Churchill Iron Plaza Penticton Inc. for 250 Winnipeg Street (Landmark Cinemas) and MCTAFT Properties Ltd. for 1704 Government Street (Britco). The two projects are eligible for tax incentives commencing in 2014 in accordance with the Community Charter and economic investment zones bylaw.

The Landmark Cinemas site is eligible for “key land use” incentives to receive a three-year tax holiday on both land and improvements, followed by a two-year tax holiday on new improvements. The Britco site will receive a five-year tax holiday on taxes payable on improvements for a new paint booth.

Bylaw amendments

Penticton Council passed the first three readings of amendments to the Irrigation, Sewer and Water Amendment Bylaw to include the area known as Sendero Canyon subdivision to the treated water and sanitary sewer areas.

Property remediation

Penticton Council declared the property located at 2379 Wiltse Dr. a hazard in accordance with Section 73 of the Community Charter, and required remedial action to structurally assess and complete any necessary structural repairs or replacement to the wall and repair any damage to the adjacent properties during the course of remedial works.

Council authorized staff to take all appropriate actions in accordance with the Community Charter to ensure the property is brought into compliance with the remedial action. Council directed staff to notify the registered property owner who will be given an opportunity to speak at the Oct. 21 meeting.

Energy Retrofit Loan Program

Penticton Council approved amendments to the 2013 Electric Utility budget to provide an addition $203,000 to fund loans for the Energy Retrofit Program. The Energy Retrofit Loan Program was officially launched on Sept. 12 at the FortisBC Energy Diet open house, with follow-up at the Saturday Market on Sept. 28.

To date staff has received requests from 32 homeowners, which exceeds the program's capacity. City staff recommended accelerating the program allowances to expedite local energy retrofits, with funds coming from the electrical reserve.

Memorial Arena roof

The Penticton Memorial Arena was built in 1951 and is considered by many to be an icon of the City. It continues to serve as a very important ice surface for local minor hockey teams, the Okanagan Hockey School and many recreational leagues.

In recent years, there have been increasing leaking problems with the roof, and previous estimates for a full roof replacement or repair have ranged from $1.2 million to as high as $1.7 million. During the 2013 capital budgeting process, Council approved $30,000 in the annual Facilities capital budget for an assessment on the roofing conditions, as well as a structural condition assessment of the roof, to provide the necessary detail to include in a request for quotes for repair and/or replacement. The assessment found the replacement of grommets and silicon injection were recommended for the 2013 repairs for a total of $40,000. The assessment also found that repairs over time were anticipated to be $569,000 to extend the lifespan of the roof for 25 years.

Penticton Council approved the reallocation of capital funds to conduct Memorial Arena roof repairs from the savings resulting from other facilities' roof repairs, and the partial reallocation of funds from the rooftop unit replacement.

Recreation pricing

Penticton Council agreed to continue the current fees and charges structure for Recreation and the Penticton Community Centre. Council also directed staff to work with the RDOS in researching and developing a sub-regional funding model that supports recreation.

City Hall renovations

Penticton Council received an update on the upcoming City Hall renovations, which would see services with direct customer impact located on the main floor and create a “one-stop shop” for City customers. Support services are planned for the second floor. The timeline is anticipated for the fall of 2013.

Vending fees

Penticton Council approved relocating the park, beach and street vending fee rate schedules to Fees and Charges Bylaw Section D – Parks, Recreation and Culture to more accurately reflect area of responsibility and customer service for those programs.

Council also directed staff to prepare an amendment to the bylaw to include the new seasonal, annual and multi-year fees and permit structure for 2014 and 2015 park, beach and street vending permits.

Zoning amendment abandoned

Penticton Council closed and abandoned a zoning amendment bylaw for 601 Winnipeg St. The bylaw was last seen by Council over two years ago and the conditions of the final reading have not been completed. According to the City's procedures, bylaws that have not completed the requirements after a two-year period are deemed stale-dated and rescinded.

By-election summary

Penticton Council received the By-Election 2013 summary report dated October 7, 2013 from the Chief Election Officer. The Local Government Act states that the Chief Election Officer must submit a report of the election results within 30 days after the declaration of official results. A ballot account was presented, and a recap outlined how 23 requests were made for mail-in ballots, mobile polls were held at the Village by the Station and the Penticton Regional Hospital and 144 residents registered at the time of voting. The shuttle service ran from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., for a cost of $1,000. Eight voters used the shuttle service. In total, the number of eligible voters for the City of Penticton was 25,768 and 14.56% of residents voted in the by-election.

To date of the report, the 2013 by-election expenses received total $27,700. Some remaining invoices are required to completely finalize the costs.

City advisory committees

Penticton Council approved the appointments for City advisory committees and Council liaisons for external organizations. Penticton Council also appointed Mayor Garry Litke to the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen new regional protocol committee with First Nations. Council also directed staff to amend all City committee terms of reference to include one Council appointee and one Council alternate.

The following are the advisory committee appointments:

  • Agriculture Advisory Committee: Coun. Wes Hopkin
  • Airport Select Committee: Mayor Garry Litke
  • Arts & Culture Advisory Committee: Coun. Judy Sentes
  • Climate Action Advisory Committee: Mayor Garry Litke
  • Community & Business Development Advisory Committee: Coun. Andrew Jakubeit
  • Development Services Advisory Committee: Coun. John Vassilaki
  • Downtown Revitalization Select Committee: Coun. Judy Sentes
  • Fiscal Review Advisory Committee: Coun. Helena Konanz
  • Heritage & Museum Advisory Committee: Coun. Wes Hopkin
  • Penticton Creek Restoration Select Committee: Coun. John Vassilaki
  • Protective Services Advisory Committee: Coun. Katie Robinson
  • SOEC Select Committee: Coun. Andrew Jakubeit
  • Transportation Advisory Committee: Coun. Katie Robinson
  • Waterfront Enhancement Select Committee: Coun. Helena Konanz
  • Waterfront Oversight Committee: Mayor Garry Litke

Commercial business rezoning

Following a public hearing, Penticton Council adopted a zoning amendment for 380 and 360 Westminster Ave. West that would allow for the renovation of an existing commercial business including the addition of a residential unit on the ground floor.

Business development park area amendment

Following a public hearing, Penticton Council adopted the Official Community Plan amendments to the exemptions section of Section 6.8 business park development permit area that would increase the size of buildings. The change affords development permit exemptions from 100 square metres and 20% of principal building to 350 square metres and 40% of the principal building to better reflect the true intent of the exemption and to offer incentives investment in the business park area of the city.

Cherry Lane Mall liquor store

Penticton Council gave second and third readings to a bylaw to amend the land use contract bylaw for 2111 Main St. that would allow for the construction of a liquor store situated next to the existing gas bar.

Council Highlights are written by communications staff at the City of Penticton. A PDF version [PDF - 130 KB] is available for download. If you require an official record of Council meeting resolutions, the Minutes are also available online.