Vernon faces parks pressure

Two down, and one to go.

The Regional District of North Okanagan board unanimously ratified a memorandum of understanding Wednesday that will see the parks function in Greater Vernon restructured. Coldstream endorsed the plan Monday, leaving Vernon as the only jurisdiction still not on board.

“I’m fairly optimistic they will ratify the agreement,” said Bob Fleming, BX-Swan Lake director, of the city.

“I would hope this (Coldstream/RDNO support) puts a little pressure on them.”

Vernon council will debate the proposal at its Dec. 10 meeting.

Rob Sawatzky, Vernon mayor, supports the pact but a majority of council will need to approve it.

“I would be surprised (if it fails) but I’ve been surprised before,” he said, adding that providing all of the necessary information to councillors is crucial.

“We have attempted in the process to have as much of council involved as possible.”

Under the agreement, some parks will remain regional in scope while others will revert to the individual jurisdictions for ownership and maintenance.

The proposal calls for the city to take over regional district-owned beaches on Lakeshore Road while the city would turn over ownership of Kal Beach to RDNO.

“This will be a durable agreement. It meets all of the expectations of those involved,” said Fleming of finding compromises.


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