'Interest' in incorporation

It’s time to reopen the discussion about the incorporation of Okanagan Falls, according to the politician representing the community at the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen board.

Area “D” director Ron Obirek says he will be raising the issue of OK Falls incorporation with the provincial government during the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention later this month in Vancouver.  

“The community is ready for the next step. The community is ready for a better tomorrow and experience,” he said.

The formation of an Okanagan Falls municipality with its own mayor and council has been debated for decades, but has been declined by the province and residents are different times over the years. 

But Obirek says with the creation of Area “I” and division of Area “D” into two distinct electoral districts during the last municipal election, the logical next step for improving improving governance for the community at the south end of Skaha Lake would be a new municipality.

“The remainder Area 'D', is now a little tighter a community, it’s not ranging all the way to Apex and Twin Lakes,” he said.

“If you look at OK Falls, we really are a little village, and we’ve been treated like we are some rural area,” he added. “It’s not a good fit for us.”

He said conversations and meetings with community members have shown a “real interest” in incorporation, maintaining it can be done without a significant hit to local taxpayers. 

“There are a lot of good reasons for incorporation and there are a lot of benefits,” Obirek said, explaining he hopes to make sure residents of OK Falls can have good information on the costs associated with incorporation this time around.

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