• Residents of Sicamous Creek Mobile Home Park were asked to look out for one another should an evacuation alert occur due to a debris flow. On March 31, the CSRD and the District of Sicamous hosted a town hall meeting at the Sicamous Seniors Centre. The meeting’s purpose was to update residents on the early warning system launched in response to the heightened risk of landslides in the Wiseman Creek area. It was stressed the alert system was new and may still be tweaked, and there may be times when residents are asked to evacuate multiple times.
• The District of Sicamous joined other B.C. communities in supporting Red Cross relief efforts in Ukraine. The recommendation to donate funds to the Red Cross Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis campaign was prompted by a message from Nelson Mayor John Dooley, shared via email as well as on YouTube. Council agreed to donate $1,000.
• Sicamous council spoke out against a proposed luxury tax on new boats. At an April 6 council meeting, a Government of Canada notice on the proposed introduction of a tax on the sale of new luxury cars and aircraft with a retail sale price of over $100,000, as well as on boats over $250,000. Coun. Colleen Anderson, manager of Old Town Bay Marina, said “It’s wrong on every level that somebody has to work so hard to make money and pay taxes and then they have to pay taxes on the funds that they’re making with the hard-earned money that they paid taxes on. There’s just something totally wrong with the system.” Council supported writing a letter to the federal government.
• A bus company already operating in the North Okanagan-Shuswap stopped in Salmon Arm and neighbouring communities to the east this week looking for public support for an expansion of service. The company, Ebus, currently has two routes in the region with stops in Chase, Sorrento, Salmon Arm, Enderby, Armstrong, Vernon and Kelowna. Representatives from Ebus were conducting a “B.C. Road Show,” asking for input and support for expanding its services to Alberta.
• Sicamous mayor, councillors, staff and guests marked Earth Day, April 22 by breaking ground for a new community $1.74 million bio-heat facility. The planned facility will consist of a biomass boiler heating system, supplied and installed by Fink Machine Inc. of Enderby, and boiler house which will repurpose wood waste into fuel, providing heat to buildings in the industrial park.
• Prioritizing business licensing over zoning when it comes to regulating short-term rentals was the preferred approach of Sicamous’ planning and development committee. Discussion at the April 13 committee meeting revolved primarily around the yet-to-be-approved Zoning Bylaw 1000. Committee chair, Coun. Jeff Mallmes, suggested the district allow short-term rentals throughout the community and deal with them through business licences. Mallmes said those he spoke with had no issue with a tiered licensing fee – a lower cost for those who live onsite or in town, and a higher fee for out-of-town owners. The owners also impressed upon Mallmes they’d never go back to renting long-term.
• Reservations were being accepted for the Pinnacle Lifestyles campground near Sicamous. Pinnacle Lifestyles was the new owner of the former Sicamous KOA campground at 3250 Oxbow Frontage Rd. in Malakwa. The Calgary-based company acquired the property earlier in the year, and was reopening it as the Sicamous RV and Cabin Resort on May 1.
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