Former Princeton councillor petitions against mixed-use trail in town

Jerome Tjerkstra lobbies against mixed-use trail in town limits

A former Princeton town councillor who has led a lobby against allowing motorized vehicles on the KVR, in town, presented a petition to council last week with “between 80 and 90 signatures.”

Jerome Tjerkstra said the people who signed the document stating they want the trail to remain non-motorized are all from Princeton and many of them from affected areas.

“This [the petition] was not intended to be a referendum. It was not intended to compete with other petitions that are out there…This is to highlight there is no consensus.”

Following the meeting Mayor Spencer Coyne said the petition will be forwarded to staff.

Tjerkstra also gave a verbal presentation raising questions related to shared use of the KVR – which has been endorsed by a standing council committee whose recommendations are also now under review.

“I want to present these questions to you. They are open ended questions and they may not be good questions. They may not be the right questions. They are just some things I think that might need to be looked at.”

Several legal points were raised, including that the ministry of transportation may have jurisdictional responsibility of the trail, that the Bridge of Dreams funding may have been contingent on non-motorized use, and that ICBC may not insure the entire trail and that the municipality may incur liabilities.

“OMV’s are only one component of a multi-faceted local tourism strategy,” he said. “TrailsBC is working on a comprehensive designated trail system throughout BC taking into consideration all stakeholders including OMV’s, cyclists, birders, equestrians and hikers. How does Princeton fit into this plan?”

Tjerkstra also asked council to refer to the Official Community Plan, related to the KVR, and wanted to know how repairs and maintenance will be funded.

“I just want it on the record as a citizen that it’s been said, and the way you decide to carry the ball forward is entirely up to you. I trust in your integrity.”

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