Cosens Bay Road details wanted

Regional District of North Okanagan wants to hear from government about Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park plans

The Regional District of North Okanagan is being cautious about joining a simmering dispute.

While the board was recently asked by the Friends of Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park to oppose a Ministry of Transportation plan to widen Cosens Bay Road, directors have decided to hear from the ministry first.

“It does impact the entire region and our municipality,” said Jim Garlick, Coldstream director.

The ministry wants to adjust the park’s boundary to remove a 30-metre-wide right-of-way centred on Cosens Bay Road to improve maintenance and safety for users of the road.

However, Friends of Kal Lake Provincial Park insist the proposal will divide the park, impact the environment and potentially lead to future development, such as utilities to the Cosens Bay cabin colony south of the park.

The Cosens Bay Property Owners Association has asked to speak to the board and it wants RDNO to support the ministry initiative.

Funds uncertain

It’s not known if Greater Vernon’s electoral areas will help keep the library open Sunday.

The City of Vernon recently agreed to spend $21,000 so the Okanagan Regional Library’s Vernon branch can stay open Sundays from October to April.

Coldstream agreed to provide $3,780, but the Regional District of North Okanagan says it doesn’t have a funding mechanism that would allow it to contribute $3,570.

“My discretionary fund is not sufficient and I’ve committed to support other things,” said Mike Macnabb, BX-Silver Star director.

The issue will be reviewed further.

“I hope in future, they establish a mechanism to give money to the Vernon library, which serves the whole area,” said Bob Spiers, a Vernon director.

Biodiversity urged

The Regional District of North Okanagan is being urged to further support the ecosystem.

The Okanagan Collaborative Conservation Program is seeking $10,000 from RDNO to implement its biodiversity conservation strategy.

“It’s a plan on how we can protect nature in the Okanagan,” said Carol Luttmer, OCCP program co-ordinator.

The Okanagan comprises 0.8 per cent of B.C.’s land mass but has 30 per cent of the species at risk and 48 per cent of the species of concern.

Among the goals are land use policy, financing conservation, sharing data among jurisdictions and stewardship on private land.

Current priorities include mapping and public education.