Enderby mayor backs building inspection tax

Enderby taxes could be climbing to ensure building inspections continue.

Enderby taxes could be climbing to ensure building inspections continue.

The Regional District of North Okanagan, which provides the building inspection service to jurisdictions outside of Vernon and Coldstream, is proposing to shift its revenue model from fees to taxation.

“With the downturn in construction, the regional district has been subsidizing the cost with reserves (because of reduced fees),” said Howie Cyr, Enderby mayor.

“It’s not sustainable to do it that way. The regional district has done everything it can to handle the problem. They’ve diminished staff.”

Cyr admits some Enderby residents will not be pleased with an overall one per cent tax increase, and particularly those who won’t be doing any construction and don’t require a building inspection.

However, he believes there is a role for the entire community to play in ensuring there is an inspection service.

“The community benefits from building starts and inspections also ensure buildings are safe,” he said.

“Without an inspection, there is no compliance.”

While Enderby supports the shift towards taxation, Cyr is waiting to see if the other jurisdictions will come on board or if they will leave the RDNO service.

“There is no efficiency to be gained by going it alone,” he said.