Blind Bay Resort expansion returns to CSRD agenda

CSRD board chair David Raven - Observer file photo
CSRD board chair David Raven
— image credit: Observer file photo

The rezoning of a proposed expansion at the Blind Bay Resort will be coming back to the Columbia Shuswap Regional District table after board chair David Raven announced his intention to move for reconsideration of the Jan. 16 vote.

"I have received significant encouragement from both directors and the public in favour of me exercising my right to require a reconsideration of the vote and so I propose to do that and return this matter to the board table at the meeting on February 20 for reconsideration," writes Raven in an internal memorandum.

Staff are seeking direction from the politicians as to how to proceed on the matter, but are not recommending the board proceed immediately to third reading of the previously rejected bylaw.

They are instead suggesting the issue once again be taken to public hearing, a move which Raven is also encouraging.

Raven says, "It would not, to my mind, be fair to the applicant, those who have contacted board members and other concerned residents to not allow everyone to have their say if this development proposal is to proceed further."

An additional complication to the issue is the current state of the Area C Official Community Plan, which is currently in the process of being repealed and replaced with an updated version.

In voting against the proposal, directors Rhona Martin, Loni Parker and René Talbot cited various issues with the proposed expansion of the resort by owner Dan Baskill. These included concerns about enlarging the dock, which would see the number of boat slips increase to 70 from the current 55, impacts on water quality, the possibility of Baskill or a future owner adding a fuelling station and the likelihood of attracting houseboats into the area.

A few days after the vote, a group of approximately 40 people who supported the rezoning came to the CSRD offices in Salmon Arm in protest.

They objected to the ability of directors who live far away from a development to defeat a project that has been strongly supported by the area director and some local residents. They also complained that directors were misinformed and the defeat will prove costly to the South Shuswap economy.




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