Splatsin band councillors George Dennis and Daniel Joe show their support for the Eagle Pass summit lookout, rebuilt by volunteers, as a welcome addition to the Secwepemc First Nation. The cabin, however, may be torn down if the provincial ministry decides the structure was renovated illegally. (File photo)

Hearing set to determine fate of Eagle Pass cabin

Volunteers could face fine of up to $10,000 for rebuilding structure without official permits.

A hearing with the volunteers who upgraded the Eagle Pass Lookout cabin is now being planned following a provincial investigation into the redevelopment of the structure.

Volunteers with the project have been told their actions could result in a fine of $10,000 and demolition of the structure.

In October 2017, the province launched an investigation into the restoration of the cabin after volunteers took on the project with what they say was verbal approval from the Ministry of Forests manager.

In a previous interview with the Observer, volunteer Rene St. Onge said he attempted to acquire provincial approval to reconstruct the cabin, but was told by a manager with FrontCounter BC in Kamloops it wasn’t needed because the work would be done on an existing structure.

“What they need to do is say, ‘you know what, there was a miscommunication,’” said St. Onge. “‘There was permission for this cabin, it’s beautiful, thank you very much.’ That’s all you need to do.”

Related link: Fate of Eagle Pass lookout in hands of bureaucracy

The cabin sits an elevation of approximately 7,500 feet, atop a rugged, rocky mountain peak. The cabin is a 14- by 14-foot engineered refurbishment of the original Eagle Pass Summit fire lookout, originally constructed in 1922. Carried out over the past two years by volunteers and donations, this reconstruction project was the subject of concern for the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development when it was discovered the work was done without official permits.

A stop work order was issued on Sept. 5, 2017 by the ministry, and applied to “all persons undertaking construction activities on this building.”

Related Link: Splatsin embrace Eagle Pass lookout project

In a statement from the ministry, the next step will be an “opportunity to be heard” hearing in May and, following that, a statutory decision-maker will consider all the evidence and determine whether the cabin should be removed or modified and the site remediated.

“At their discretion, the statutory decision-maker could also impose administrative penalties of up to $10,000,” says the ministry statement.

“The ministry is unable to provide further comment until this hearing process is complete.”


@SalmonArm
newsroom@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

In photos: Downtown Salmon Arm sings with Super Crawl

Thursday night concert series leads into Roots and Blues Festival

More wildfires discovered near Lumby, Cherryville

Canadian Armed Troops in Okanagan, Mabel Creek blaze creeps towards lake

Naramata firefighters diverted after fires breaches Burns Lake camp

The crew was sent to Vanderhoof after a wildfire reportedly overtook a camp near Burns Lake

Pedestrian safety a concern at Canoe rail crossing

Salmon Arm council to consider sidewalk addition at budget time

Okanagan water board seeks mussels funding

Okanagan Basin Water Board sends request to new federal fisheries minister

Armed Troops in Okanagan to help firefighters

Canadian Armed Forces arrived in Vernon Thursday, being deployed to West Kelowna fire

New blaze near Summerland highly visible

Provincial crews are responding Friday evening to a new fire west of… Continue reading

Safeway union urgest rejection of mediator recommendations

Says mediator asks for too many concessions

Naramata firefighters diverted after fires breaches Burns Lake camp

The crew was sent to Vanderhoof after a wildfire reportedly overtook a camp near Burns Lake

To address peacock problem, B.C. city moves ahead on trapping plan

Surrey’s new bylaw focuses on ensuring people no longer feed the birds, ahead of relocation

Hospitals to see ‘delays’ in care after losing Saudi students, health group says

About 1,000 Saudi residents called back to kingdom after suspending diplomatic relations with Canada

Athletes gear up for Super League Triathlon

Pro athletes discuss the upcoming Super League Triathlon taking place in Penticton Aug. 17-19

Bernier diatribe against ‘extreme multiculturalism’ boosts Liberal coffers

Party spokesperson Braeden Caley says online donations doubled, social media engagement quadrupled

‘Disjointed’ system hinders British Columbia First Nations in wildfire fight

More than 550 wildfires were burning in B.C. and crews were bracing for wind and dry lightning

Most Read