Council decided to turn a $5,000 grant request from Halloween Family Fun Night into a budget line item to fund fireworks on an annual basis. (File photo)

Council decided to turn a $5,000 grant request from Halloween Family Fun Night into a budget line item to fund fireworks on an annual basis. (File photo)

COVID makes some of the 2021 grant decisions for Princeton council

Municipality doles out funds while striving to meet policy

Pandemic restrictions affected how the Town of Princeton decided to distribute Grants In Aid for 2021, according to Mayor Spencer Coyne.

Council held a special meeting Thursday, Feb. 25, to consider local grant requests.

“COVID made some of the decisions for us,” he said.

The municipality received applications totaling $51,000, against a budget of $25,000.

The meeting where the decisions were made was not live streamed in the same way as regular council meetings, and the gallery was closed to the public under pandemic rules.

The Princeton Rodeo Club requested $3,000 for general revenue, however, that event has already been cancelled because of COVID.

The Princeton Traditional Music Festival, held each year in August, asked for $6,500 for sound equipment and food vouchers for visiting participants.

The application was denied.

“You can’t have crowds, and they are talking about 150 musicians coming into the community to gather,” said Coyne.

“There’s no way they can function as a music festival under current guidelines…or even if we were under last summer’s rules.

“I think everyone was being optimistic.”

The largest grant, $7,500 for Princeton and District Community Social Services, was awarded to help jump start a new Meals on Wheels program.

“We decided to help them,” said Coyne.

“We want to see that get off the ground if that’s possible. I don’t want to speak for the rest of council, but for me I see it as a one time thing.”

Council’s deliberations reflected an updated Grant In Aid policy, adopted last year.

The funding is designated for seed and special projects, and organizations can only receive dollars three out of every four years.

“At some point these programs should be self-sustainable. The taxpayers shouldn’t be on the hook for these things all of the time,” Coyne said.

With that in mind, council voted to move several applications, which are put forward each year by the same groups, to individual expense lines on the annual budget.

A $5,000 Princeton Arts Council contribution will be funded outside of the Grants In Aid program, while a $5,000 stake in the Halloween Family Fun Night fireworks will become the municipality’s responsibility.

A request from the Princeton Seniors’ Centre for $5,600 for a new furnace was also absorbed into the budget rather than being resolved with a grant.

“We own the building so we are moving that to capital expenses,” Coyne said.

“It’s our building. It’s our responsibility.”

The Support Our Health Care Society asked for $1,100 to produce a brochure of local health services and contacts.

Council decided to assist by taking the project’s printing in-house.

The Kokanee Summer Swim Club asked $2,250 for coaches certificate fees, and that file was settled in an unusual way.

“The swim club has an outstanding balance on their pool time from last year, so we are gong to write off their debt to the town,” said Coyne.

The town granted $2,000 towards the start up of a local lacrosse league.

That application was made by James Graham, Princeton’s director of finance, who had requested $10,000.

Graham, who was present for most of the meeting, left the council chambers for the discussion.

Coyne said the town has reserved $5,500 of its Grant In Aid budget to address needs that may arise in the coming months.

“We’ve left it in there in case maybe COVID does get better we can use it for something else, at some time.”

The special meeting of council, where the decisions were made, was not live streamed in the same way as regular meetings and the gallery was closed to the public under pandemic rules.

Related: Proposed tax increase for 2021 amounts to $30 for the average household

Related: Princeton business owners already applying for improvement grants

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:mailto:andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com


 
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Council has left some grant money in reserves in case there is a need later in the year. File photo

Council has left some grant money in reserves in case there is a need later in the year. File photo

Just Posted

Penticton bylaw officers tore down a “pretty significantly sized” homeless camp underneath the bridge near Riverside Drive Friday, April 16 morning. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton bylaw tears down ‘significantly sized’ homeless camp under bridge

Many residents had made complaints about the camp before it was torn down

Through their Simple Generosity campaign, Valley First has pledged to donate $1 million of community support to British Columbia communities in 2021. (Contributed)
Valley First rewarding Penticton families with innovative way to thrive together

Participants with ‘inspiring ideas’ will receive a surprise for their family, valued at up to $2,500

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
110 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Provincial health officers announced 1,005 new cases throughout B.C.

Ryan Upson’s first BCHL hat-trick propelled the Vees to a 7-1 stomping of the Cranbrook Bucks Thursday April 16) night to improve their record to 7-1-0-0 in this abbreviated pod season. (Cherie Morgan/Cherie Morgan Photography)
Pentiton Vees bounce back with big win over Bucks

Vees score five in under five minutes, win 7-1 over Cranbrook

Black Crow Cannabis is just one of Vernon's many pot shops now open in town. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Kelowna has highest cannabis fees in Okanagan

Vernon’s 14 stores pay second highest business licence fees

Flow Academy is located at 1511 Sutherland Avenue in Kelowna. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Black Press Media Weekly Roundup: Top headlines this week

Here’s a quick roundup of the stories that made headlines across the Okanagan, from April 11 to 16

Vancouver Police Const. Deepak Sood is under review by the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. after making comments to a harm reduction advocate Sunday, April 11. (Screen grab)
VIDEO: Vancouver officer convicted of uttering threats under watchdog review again

Const. Deepak Sood was recorded Sunday saying ‘I’ll smack you’ and ‘go back to selling drugs’ to a harm reduction advocate

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate persists, 1,005 new cases Friday

Hospitalization up to 425, six more virus-related deaths

Ford F-350s have been targeted in the North Okanagan by auto thieves since February 2021, Vernon North Okanagan RCMP data shows. (Gene J. Puskar - The Canadian Press/AP file)
Auto thieves target older Ford F-350s in Vernon: RCMP

Vernon Mounties remind all motorists no vehicle is immune to auto crime

The Nautical Dog Cafe at Skaha marina is getting its patio ready in hopes Mother Nature will provide where provincial restrictions have taken away indoor dining. (Facebook)
‘A lot of instability’: B.C. restaurants in layoff limbo

As COVID-19 cases stay high, restaurants in British Columbia are closed to indoor dining

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
RCMP intercept vehicle fleeing with infant taken from Kamloops hospital

The baby was at the hospital receiving life-saving care

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP were present at the McDonalds in Armstrong Thursday, April 15, 2021. (Tomer Joury - Facebook)
Police handle ‘high-risk’ situation at Armstrong residence

A woman was apprehended and taken to hospital under the Mental Health Act; no charges laid

Since April 4, 38 flights with COVID-19 cases have departed from Vancouver International Airport, while 23 arrived. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Vancouver the largest source of domestic flights with COVID-19 cases: data

This month alone, 38 flights with COVID-19 cases have departed from Vancouver International Airport, while 23 arrived

Most Read