RDOS proceeds with ‘ridiculous’ sign enforcement plan

Chairman of the board argues against asking residents to comply with rules that are likely to change soon anyway

Over the objections of its leader, the regional district on Thursday reaffirmed its support for a cleanup of roadside signs in the South Okanagan.

Approximately 300 signs along Highway 97 from the southern edge of Oliver to the Canada-U.S. border are in the cross-hairs of the joint project of the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen and the B.C. Transportation Ministry.

Beginning in January, owners were issued letters asking them to remove the signs and warning that failure to do so could result in signs being removed.

About 80 per cent of the offending signs are on highway right-of-ways, but the ministry changed course in April and announced it wouldn’t proceed with a mass cleanup until the fall so as not to unduly affect business owners in the lead-up to tourist season.

Meanwhile, the RDOS, which can’t tear down signs on private property without a court order that could take years to obtain, will continue with the letter campaign aimed at voluntary compliance.

Allan Patton, the director for rural Oliver, asked colleagues at a committee meeting Thursday to recommit to the project in light of the ministry’s decision to delay its work.

“I think it’s important to decide whether we move ahead or not,” Patton said, despite the board also considering sign-related bylaw amendments based on feedback it received in recent months.

Mark Pendergraft, the director for rural Osoyoos, suggested the enforcement effort be put off until the uncertainty around possible bylaw amendments is cleared up.

“Right now, we’re sending out blanket letters, if we proceed, to every person with a sign, and it may be a legitimate sign, or it may not be. You’re just making people angry for no reason,” said Pendergraft, also the RDOS board chairman.

“That is the definition of looking ridiculous.”

Other committee members spoke in favour of continuing on.

“Just because the province blinked doesn’t mean we should blink too,” said Tom Siddon, the director for Okanagan Falls-Kaleden

The committee voted 13-1 in favour of proceeding with the project and bylaw amendment process. Pendergraft was the lone vote in opposition.

RDOS staff has recommended bylaw amendments that would allow agricultural property owners to post more signs, but not third-party signs some have asked for. Staff also suggested public meetings be held in June in Penticton and Oliver.

 

 

Just Posted

Spiritleaf, Penticton’s first cannabis retailer opened in 2019. (Western News File)
Penticton expands cannabis store hours to match liquor stores

Cannabis stores are now allowed to operate until 11 p.m. in Penticton

(Jennifer Smith/Black Press file photo)
Poll: Should Penticton hold Canada Day celebrations this year?

The spotlight on residential schools has caused the rethinking of Canada Day

A committee held its first meeting on June 9 to consider opionions for incorporation of the community of Okanagan Falls. At present, Okanagan Falls is the largest unincorporated community within the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen. (Contributed)
Study begins for Okanagan Falls incorporation

Committee held first meeting on June 9

(Pixabay photo)
Morning Start: Hot and cold water have different pouring sounds

Your morning start for Wednesday, June 16, 2021

(Facebook)
New trial date set in Penticton for Thomas Kruger-Allen’s triple assault charges

May trial was delayed after Crown witnesses failed to show up

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
VIDEO: Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

(Phil McLachlan/Capital News file)
Man found dead at Kelowna orchard

Police say the man was working in the orchard at the time of his death; criminality not suspected

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens as Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents the province’s latest budget, April 20, 2021. The budget projects $19 billion in deficits over three years. (Hansard TV)
B.C. government budget balloons, beyond COVID-19 response

Provincial payroll up 104,000 positions, $10 billion since 2017

Ocean debris is shown on Long Beach in Tofino, B.C. on April, 18, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Shoreline cleanup finds COVID-related trash increased during height of the pandemic

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup reports litter from single-use food packaging nearly doubled

Doctor David Vallejo and his fiancee Doctor Mavelin Bonilla hold photos of themselves working, as they kiss at their home in Quito, Ecuador, Wednesday, June 9, 2021. Doctor Vallejo and Doctor Bonilla suspended their wedding in order to tend to COVID-19 patients and in the process Vallejo got sick himself with the disease, ending up in an ICU for several days. (AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)
Love, sacrifice and surviving COVID-19: one couple’s story

COVID hits Ecuadorian doctors who delayed wedding to treat sick

Kay Bartholomew, daughter of the founding owner of Wayside Press, Harold George Bartholomew (Bart Sr.). Outdoor enthusiast and longest-standing Wayside employee, Kay worked for the company until she was 97 spanning 80 years.
PHOTOS: A century of service from Wayside in Vernon

The press and printing company, founded by Harold George Bartholomew, turns 100 in 2021

Syilx artist Sheldon Pierre Louis contributed a new painting to UBC Okanagan’s public art collection. (UBC Okanagan)
Syilx artist contributes painting to UBCO public art collection

The new painting is titled cax̌alqs — red dress

Spread out on the staircase of the Kelowna courthouse on June 10, 2021, were several signs with messages calling for justice against Curtis Sagmoen and an end to violence. (Aaron Hemens - Capital News file)
Sagmoen cop assault trial set for 2022

Pre-trial conference set to start process Jan. 26, 2022

Most Read