Editorial: How can we lose?

Entering the Smart City Challenge is literally win-win

Penticton is a pretty sweet place to live, though there are many ways could be better (and many detractors happy to focus on those negatives).

Even those detractors need to get out and support Penticton’s try to gain up to a $10-million investment through the Smart Cities challenge.

Related: City of Penticton invests in Smart Cities bid

A smart cities approach aims to achieve meaningful outcomes for residents by leveraging the fundamental benefits that data and connected technology have to offer.

Whether it’s safety, the economy, affordable housing for all, job prospects, environmental protection, even communications with city hall — all items pointed out as concerns in various public engagement sessions — there are ways to, if not solve them, improve the situation.

What’s required is bold thinking, conversation and innovation to come up with plans to address them. There is the possibility of vastly improving the fabric of life in our community by winning this prize and leveraging technology to address some of these fundamental problems.

If you’re wondering what that $10-million prize could do for Penticton, think about this: the 2018 tax requirement — the amount of taxes the city needs to collect to meet the budget — is $32 million. While winning the challenge won’t lower taxes, it still represents an investment in the community property taxes couldn’t begin to match.

What we don’t need is Penticton’s peanut gallery, who seem to prefer making comments on social media to actual real-world involvement.

The time for a culture of negativity is over. If you’ve got a concern, it’s time to get engaged in the process, whether that’s by contributing your ideas or simply supporting the process.

Other than the fact that if Penticton doesn’t play, we can’t win, any comparison with a lottery is mistaken. Even if we don’t win, ideas will still have been generated, and an incredible level of collaboration between city hall, citizens, our growing tech and business sectors.

There’s really no way to lose, unless we decide not to pull together as community.

Just Posted

West Bench Elementary makes shortlist for $20,000 prize

Penticton elementary school in the runnings for the Staples Superpower your School contest

Osoyoos border gun smuggler sentenced

Alex Louie, who prefers the name Senk’lip, was sentenced to the mandatory minimum

Okanagan can learn from Washington’s wine industry growth

Winery owner cites importance of industry collaboration

City of Penticton installing new water supply pipe

Residents asked to conserve water during supply pipe connection

Penticton looking to build a smart grid

City is looking at ways to generate electricity

Rainy week ahead for Okanagan and Shuswap

Environment Canada is forecast rain for the next three days, starting Tuesday afternoon

Author: New generation creating disruption and change

Author says millennial generation will be harbingers of change

Pro-Trump protest sign with F-word is OK, court rules

Judges say Ontario man can protest publicly, even using vulgar language

VIDEO: Police officer looking for distracted drivers gets hit by truck

Road safety investigator clipped by trailer while patrolling busy intersection

YVR wants you to help name three new puppies

Say hello to the Vancouver Airport’s new assistance pups

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Search and rescue help injured sledders off Owlhead

Volunteer searchers also locate two hikers near Little Shuswap Lake

Suspect who attacked autistic man in Ontario could be from B.C.’s south coast: police

29-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Most Read