The vote is in!
It’s not official, but it looks like Vernon-Coldstream will soon be home to a new multi-use sports facility.
The Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO) has just announced preliminary results for the sports facility referendum.
- Total Number of Votes: 8220
- Total Number of Yes Votes: 4303
- Total Number of No Votes: 3917
General voting took place today between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. at various polling stations around Greater Vernon. On March 27 and April 3, more than 2600 voters also took advantage of advanced polling.
With 45,095 registered voters in the area, the referendum managed to attract less than a 20 per cent voter turnout.
This decision gives the RDNO permission to move ahead with $7.5 million in borrowing over the next 20 years to construct the facility. The project will be located at the Okanagan College campus in Vernon.
In the weeks leading up to the referendum, despite some opposition from concerned tax payers, the issue seemed to gain momentum when organizations like Vernon Minor Football, Vernon Chamber of Commerce, and the North Okanagan Sports Society came out publicly in support of the sports facility.
Akbul Mund, President of the North Okanagan Sports Society, was thrilled with the preliminary results.
“This is exciting news for the community. It will bring more people to the community, and it’s a positive impact for the business community as well as the sports community.”
Mund went on to thank Greater Vernon voters for making their voices heard.
“Thanks to everyone for coming out and voting. And thank you to the Regional District. They put a great effort into getting this passed.”
Local football coach, and member of Vernon Minor Football, Bill Tarr, was also excited with the news, though he had hoped for a better turnout.
“Well, I was expecting a higher voter turnout, but I am happy that the people who did come out agreed this was a good project.”
Tarr noted that he’s been working with different sport user groups for over ten years.
“We had a good handle on what was wanted and needed. This isn’t the end, this is a beginning. There’s so much more work to be done. It’s a really good start.”
Here is a video of the proposed complex.