Councillor Frank Armitage attended the Similkameen Valley Planning Society meeting as the municipal representative. “Our regional director Brad Hope was appointed chairman,” stated Armitage “and I was pleased to see Nancy Allison take on the position of vice chair.”
Armitage further reported that Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton was reappointed as the Regional District of the Okanagan Similkameen chair.
Councillor Jason Earle attended the open house for the RDOS Master Plan for Trails. “RDOS hired a consulting group to congeal the overall process,” stated Earle. “I found it very interesting and reassuring that all the user groups are meeting and working together to find solutions to the trail problems on their own with a little help from RDOS and a knowledgeable consulting firm.”
Earle attended the Highland dancers Christmas Fling and said he was proud of the event. “It is free for anyone to get in as long as the bring an item for the food hamper. I think it is a great way to give back to our community.”
Harkness reported back that Work Zone is closing on January 30 and an employment facilitator will open up at the Skills Centre through a YMCA employment program. “Fifteen million dollars in funding for employment programs has been reduced to five million for our service area,” stated Harkness.
Councillor Kim Maynard announced the new lighting along the trail has been getting some final tweaks to ensure energy efficiency. “The lights come on by photocell and go off at midnight,” stated Maynard. “I hope this will satisfy some of the issues we have been having and complaints the town office has been receiving regarding their running time.”
Maynard also was happy to inform council that a run is being considered along the Kettle Valley Rail Trail from Princeton to Summerland. “The organizers are anticipating around 800 runners,” stated Maynard.
A letter from concerned resident Kay Goghlin regarding the deer in Princeton was referred to Earle for further review. “I encourage people to continue to send letters to the town office,” stated Earle. “Cranbrook went through a similar situation starting with the same process and we can use their knowledge to help us.”
Maynard also brought before council a motion to designate the trail within town limits for non-motorized use only. “The lack of this designation being in place is holding us back from future funding. I have been speaking with John Hawkings from the province and he stated very clearly that funding is being favoured for communities who already have this designation in place. It is not something unique for Princeton, but rather Princeton is one of the remaining communities in B.C., along the KVR who have yet to implement this regulation within town limits. This designation would allow Hawkings to pitch for funding for Princeton with more favourable chances.
“I agree with you in principle,” added Armitage, “but who polices it?”
Maynard stated that for most communities it becomes a matter of respecting signage.
Harkness wondered, “Would we be responsible for signage?”
“Only as the municipality,” responded Maynard.
The motion was carried.