City to study what amenities it can afford to provide taxpayers

City can't afford status quo

The City of Penticton is taking a long hard look at what it can afford to provide taxpayers. 

“At the present time, the city has more assets and amenities than funds available to sustainably manage them,” said chief administrative officer Donny van Dyk in a news release Thursday.

To tackle the issue, the municipality will spend $583,000 over the next two years to complete an in-depth study on the “relevance” of existing amenities to the community, find new funding sources and “opportunities to enhance, re-purpose or decommission.”

Penticton spends $10M-$15M a year maintaining and operating assets like arenas, the community centre, the Leir House or library, the city said. Of $1.25B in assets, nine per cent are past their expected life. It’s likely some difficult funding decisions are on the horizon, and the city says it wants to be as well-informed as possible. 

Starting early 2020, city amenities will be audited to get a grasp on “conditions, costs, revenues collected, and usage.”

The city says public consultation will be a part of the audit, and as issues are discovered, they will be tackled as quickly as possible in advance of the full adoption of the program in 2021.

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