Five Lake Country properties are now within the protective bounds of a local fire service area after the district’s council moved to enlarge the fire safety zone.
On Tuesday (May 4), council approved the expansion of the Lake Country fire protection area to include the properties, which — until now — were left in the protection of the BC Wildfire Service.
The five properties are all located in the 6000 block of Oyama Lake Road, on the eastern edge of the municipal boundary. Now that they’re within the zone, the district’s fire department will provide fire response by tanker truck.
Petitions submitted by the affected residents were all deemed valid by the corporate officer in April, which prompted council’s amendment of the Fire Protection Local Service Area (LHA) bylaw two weeks later on Tuesday.
It’s not clear how or for how long the properties were left outside the protection zone; the staff report only states it was “for reasons unknown.”
Council gave first, second and third readings on the matter at its April 20 meeting. In the report to council, corporate services director Reyna Seabrook said incorporating the five properties in the LHA will add the costs associated with 130 acres to the District of Lake Country’s budget.
The cost to the owners for joining the LSA is levied by a tax rate of 0.45 per cent per $1,000, which the district estimates will be no higher than $1,666 each.
An assessment of the properties by the Lake Country Fire Department found fire risks have already been mitigated immediately around the structures. However, the remainder of the land does not necessarily adhere to Fire Smart recommendations, according to the staff report.
“The only requirement from the fire department is the removal of several trees on one property,” the report states, while also noting the nearest fire hydrant is located about 5.4 km away at the corner of Todd and Hayton Road.