Bylaw officers in Lumby have had a busy 2020.
The North Okanagan village has seen an 80 per cent increase in bylaw complaints this year compared to 2019. That’s with two months worth of complaints yet to be recorded.
A Bylaw Enforcement Report dated Oct. 30 provided an update on the number of complaints from August through October at council’s regular meeting Nov. 16.
There were 95 new complaints filed between those months, an increase from the 68 that were received from April through July. It’s unclear whether village council received a bylaw enforcement report for the months of January through March.
The vast majority complaints pertain to the village’s Good Neighbour bylaw, designed to enhance the quality of life for local residents. Of the 168 complaints received from the beginning of April to the end of October, 127 fall under the bylaw.
There were also 17 total zoning bylaw complaints, seven building complaints, two calls for animal control and one COVID-19-related complaint.
Council passed the 2020 Good Neighbour Bylaw in June, and the report indicates there is still a learning curve for the community to overcome.
“Education on the new Good Neighbour Bylaw is an ongoing process,” the report reads. “We are working proactively with Public Works to ensure a smooth transition into winter operations through education and enforcement under the new bylaw.”
The report lists on-street parking as a major challenge, adding residents and businesses will need further education on unnecessary on-street parking, especially during the winter snow plowing months.
The new Good Neighbour Bylaw states that “no person shall store a vehicle on any street, highway, right of way, boulevard, or leave the vehicle unmoved in such a location, for more than 48 hours.” Unauthorized parking in a public space can lead to fines from $100 to $200, according to the bylaw.
Some complaints over the summer were regarding businesses in Lumby that did not have current business licences. The report says these businesses received letters and in some cases a visit, advising them to get a licence. Most businesses complied as of July 31, the report states.
The lone COVID-19-related complaint was directed at a local business, according to the October report, which added that the bylaw office has reached out to Interior Health to determine the proper course of action and the legal parameters around such complaints.
It wasn’t all bad news in the Oct. 30 report, which said that Bylaw Enforcement Officer Julie Pilon was “humbled and amazed” with the support shown at the Lumby and area food drive in October.
“The drive was a great success, due to the amazing volunteers who came out with such passion and willingness to help the community,” the report read.