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2 Penticton councillors attend economic conference in Idaho

Disaster response, workforce housing among issues discussed at cross-border forum this week
Penticton City Hall. (Western News - File)

A pair of Penticton city councillors were among the more than 500 elected officials and industry leaders from across North America to attend an annual economics forum south of the border this week.

Deputy Mayor Helena Konanz and Coun. Isaac Gilbert represented Penticton at the 32nd annual Pacific Northwest Economic Region (PNWER) in Boise, Idaho from July 16 to 20.

The event brings together state and provincial legislators, as well as government and industry leaders, to discuss the challenges that face the region.

“This was a tremendous opportunity to hear from and share with other elected officials who are facing similar challenges,” Konanz said.

“We see that natural disasters are becoming more frequent, so what are the steps we can take to mitigate the dangers? We discussed the need to create workforce housing and how we must collaborate on issues like quagga mussels that threaten our lakes. We want to deliver the best for Penticton and this was a chance to find ways to improve services to residents.”

City officials say the estimated total cost of the trip was $7,500.

The week-long forum welcomed politicians from B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Washington, Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Montana.

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