Restoring a floodplain

The En'owkin Centre will have written support from the Regional District Okanagan Similkamneen as they seek funding to reconstruct a floodplain on Penticton Indian Band land.

The RDOS board voted on Thursday to write a letter of support, after director Michael Bezener explained the project and other undertakings by the centre's 'ECOmmunity Place' program.

The project will reconnect a chinook pond on PIB land to the Penticton Channel.

Bezener outlined that the En'owkin Centre is applying to the Okanagan Basin Water Board's annual grant program for funding to help do environmental planning.

In a briefing note to board members and media, Bezener wrote that the area is the "last significant floodplain" in Penticton, which supports "culturally-significant" species and species at risk.

When work is eventually completed, Bezener also said chinook salmon and other native fish will be present in the area once again.

The RDOS contributed financially to the En'owkin Centre earlier this year. At their Jan. 4 meeting, board members approved giving $57,755 to the En'owkin Centre to purchase a 2.29-hectare land parcel, which will be conserved for its environmental factors.

Bezener said the engineering designs are expected to be fully approved by March. Construction is anticipated to begin by winter of 2019.

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