Trio Marine Group has another year to get their ducks in a row, thanks to an extension from the City of Penticton.
At their regular Sept. 28 meeting, just ahead of an Oct. 1 deadline, city council voted to extend the development agreement for Skaha Marina by a year in order to give Trio Marine time to deal with two issues that have come up. The corresponding development agreement for the adjacent parkland is unaffected.
According to director of operations Mitch Moroziuk, one issue was the late arrival of the joint lease agreement between the Province of B.C., the city and Trio. The second was a request from the Penticton Indian Band, which would require time to complete.
“Staff have also had discussions with the Penticton Indian Band, who have indicated they would like further consultation on this development and would also like an environmental and archaeological impact assessment completed,” said Moroziuk.
Both the review of the joint lease and meeting the PIB’s requirements are likely to take some time, according to Moroziuk, who recommended moving the milestones in the development agreement ahead a year.
An environmental assessment was done early in the process, but Moroziuk said the band has different concerns than the city.
“We were looking for contaminates. The band is more interested in what impact this development may have on the water and the lands,” said Moroziuk, adding that the band also wants more information on the history of the land.
“What they are interested in finding out is were there any uses of that area in the past and are there any archaeological items we are concerned with.”
Mayor Jakubeit said Trio Marine will bear the brunt of the costs for both studies.
Oct. 1 is a milestone date in the development agreement, the point at which Trio was expected to provide the city with their financing plan for the marina development for review and approval.
Jakubeit said that would first need to be reviewed by the city, then Trio, which couldn’t be accomplished by Oct. 1. He added the province probably would object to the delay.
“Given it took them (the province) till now to give us the lease, which was talked about in the spring, I don’t see them moving fast either,” said Jakubeit.
Lisa Martin, spokesperson for Save Skaha Park, which has been fighting to stop the deal, which will give Trio Marine a 29-year lease on part of the park, where they plan to build a waterslide complex, was disappointed council voted to extend the agreement. She pointed out that if they hadn’t, it might have ended the whole deal.
Jakubeit said the one-year extension allows the marina to operate in the existing state until Trio have a chance to do the evaluations the PIB has requested.
“I would certainly like to have some closure on this moving forward or not moving forward sooner than that, but given the circumstances that have come forward here with the late lease from the province and the letter concerning engagement from the PIB, I think we need to give it investigation,” said Jakubeit.