Letter: Questions to raise for Penticton council

Someone needs to question council on the legalities of securing the dedication of Skaha Park and other park lands on title.

I will personally be away, so when you attend the Nov. 23 Skaha Park meeting, you should consider having council explain the Parks and Recreation Zoning bylaw,

Permitted uses 1) carnival, 2) community garden 3) government service 4) indoor recreation 5) marina 6) outdoor amusement, entertainment and recreation 7) outdoor market 8) public parking lot and 9) accessory use, building or structure.

Is it possible to further refine the above permitted uses or do we simply remove item three, six and nine from permitted uses.

If items three, six and nine were removed from permitted uses, then council would then be forced to present a referendum question to be placed before the electorate to approve the requested uses of park lands. The electorate would then vote via a referendum question to approve or deny the requested use that has been proposed by council.

Further, someone needs to question council on the legalities of securing the dedication of Skaha Park and other park lands on title.

A recent article noted that Summerland will use this method to protect Conkle Mountain as a park in perpetuity. Certain non eligible park uses today would not be enforced by city employees, which will reduce any conflicts with current park users.  According to the article, Ian McIntosh (director of development services), states that this form of park dedication is the most power tool to protect the park and only the electorate can undo the dedication.

Mayor Jakubeit and council have indicated to me that the parks and recreation committee will accomplish the same goal, however, the parks and recreation committee are not permitted to make any  binding recommendations on Skaha Park.

If you can comprehend this comment, please call me and explain where I am lacking understanding on the process in progress.

Penticton residents, you need to negotiate the level of park protection that you envision today and for the lands into the future.

An individual at the parks meeting stated that when Okanagan Lake Park was protected 35 years ago, that the parks and recreation zoning bylaw should also been amended at the same time. We now learn that of our mistakes in the past, come back to haunt us.

Ted Wiltse




Penticton Western News