City approves tourism budget

Officials are trying to keep on top of tourism trends.

Officials are trying to keep on top of tourism trends.

Vernon council has approved the 2014 tourism marketing plan and budget, and it includes working with hotels, resorts and others to promote the area as a destination.

“We have a lot more businesses getting used to the idea that they can come to us and partner (financially),” said Michelle Jefferson, tourism manager.

However, there are still some questions as to how successful marketing campaigns are, particularly when social media or websites are involved.

“There is no formal way of saying this person who saw an ad generated a booking,” said Jefferson.

One area the city is scrutinizing further is the 70 per cent increase in people accessing the Vernon Tourism website from a mobile device.

Handicapped parking improved

It will be easier for people with mobility issues to access Vernon city hall.

The main city hall parking lot has been modified to accommodate handicapped vehicles with side opening lifts.

The new stall has been painted and is located at the northwest corner of the parking lot to allow for easy access to the civic complex.

Signs identifying the site will be installed within the next two weeks.

Industrial land use challenged

Vernon is updating its official community plan but there are questions as to why industrial land is being promoted.

“We are hearing there is no industrial land that can meet the needs of companies, then why are we keeping that designation?” said Coun. Catherine Lord.

However, staff indicates that the new OCP would see the consolidation of some parcels of land and that would provide investors with a large parcel for development.