West Bench

The commutation option

I have received some questions recently about the two letters that went out to ratepayers on the new West Bench water system last week.  The first letter contained information about the option to commute payments for the capital costs of the West Bench water system upgrade.  The second letter was a mock water bill, giving people some preliminary information about their water usage relative to other West Bench properties.

Commutation letter (template)


Council restores firefighter positions

Funding for the two firefighter positions cut in the 2014 budget will be restored in the 2015 budget, Penticton city council announced Monday.

According to Mayor Garry Litke, the city has been in talks with the Penticton Indian Band since the spring, developing an agreement to provide fire protection, first responder and fire safety inspection services to the band’s new development and residential areas (non-native leasehold improvements) east of the Penticton Channel: Skaha Hills, Riva Ridge, Barefoot Beach Resort, Wright’s Beach Campground and Red Wing.

2015 Selby Park upgrades

The Area 'F' Parks Commission has prioritized some kind of bathroom and a water station (for drinking, filling water bottles, etc.) for Selby Park.  This could be an outhouse (pictured) or something more elaborate with its own flush toilets.  Of course, flush toilets require a septic fields and a septic field is more money.

This is early stage. More information about costs and alternatives will be posted as it becomes available. At this point we are looking for thoughts or ideas on this. 


Resident urges audit of West Bench water bills

A property owner on the West Bench is calling for an audit of the community’s water billing practices to determine how many ratepayers are receiving special discounts.

Ronald Johnson said he discovered three years ago that some West Bench residents have  exemptions to avoid paying the per-acre water charge on non-irrigable parts of their properties, like gullies.

In one case, he discovered a landowner was being billed for just two of 28 acres, and based on his inquiries believes up to 10 such exemptions have been granted since 1996.

September 2014 update on the horse problem: Root Cause Analysis

I have received many calls lately about the number of roaming horses on the West Bench.  In addition, many people have noticed that some herds have taken up residence on the West Bench full-time.  A few years ago it was rare to see a horse on the bench in the summer.

I have to start by saying the following:


Tennis on the West Bench

The idea has emerged of locating a tennis structure on the land to the north of West Bench School. A small group of us met with the board of School District 67 yesterday to introduce the idea:

  1. Myself, representing the West Bench
  2. Councillor Helena Konanz representing tennis players and the City of Penticton (in that order)
  3. Ken Naylor representing the Penticton Tennis Club.  Ken talked about the significant growth of the tennis club and the imminent demise of their facility at the Penticton Yacht Club.



Riding ring signage

The sign for the Bud Butler Equestrian Area (at the west end of Selby Park) was installed today. It was donated by Structurlam.

The purpose of the sign is to draw residents' attention to the fact that we have a very nice public riding ring in Selby Park.  Horse owners on the West Bench make frequent use of the facility.

As for the history, Sue Gibbons contributed the following:


Keeping livestock regulations: update 13 August 2014

I had a meeting on July 31, 2014, with a group of West Bench horse owners and Chris Garrish, the RDOS planner working on the livestock bylaw.

Three major issues were addressed during the meeting. I have outlined the issues below and noted my recommendation to Chris.  Of course, these are just my recommendations.  Staff will come up with another revision of the draft bylaw based on this meeting and other interactions with the public.