COUNCIL BRIEFS: Public nuisance bylaw, summer shuttle bus and secondary suites

Revelstoke council tackles a number of issues at July 14 meeting.

Public Nuisance Bylaw nears adoption

Do you like to get loud and rowdy on the walk home after a night on the town? That could end up costing you $500.

Revelstoke council gave first three readings to a new Public Nuisance Bylaw that will allow RCMP and Bylaw Enforcement Officers to ticket people who get too drunk, fight, or go to the bathroom in public.

The bylaw was recommended by RCMP Staff-Sgt. Kurt Grabinsky, who asked for a bylaw that would address the problem of rowdy late night drunks.

It prohibits “engaging in drunkenness, profane swearing or indecent, obscene or grossly insulting language on a highway of in a public place,” taking part in fights in public, and urinating or defecating in public.

Anyone who violates the bylaw can be fined up to $500, plus the cost of prosecution.

The bylaw still needs final adoption by council to become law.

Summer shuttle bus proposed

The City of Revelstoke is looking to extend the popular ski resort shuttle into the summer months, with the possibility of also servicing a proposed charter air service.

The shuttle to Revelstoke Mountain Resort gets about 46,000 rides each winter, and now the operators — RMR and the Revelstoke Accommodation Association — want to expand it to provide summer service and airport service to pick up passengers of proposed charter flights, explains a staff report by Alan Mason, the city’s director of economic development.

The proposal would involve leasing a fourth bus that would be dedicated to the air charter and would go to Salmon Arm to pick up passengers if the plane couldn’t make it to Revelstoke.

Council agreed to issue a Request for Proposals to find someone to operate the additional services. The city owns the buses, which were purchased with money from the Resort Municipality Infrastructure Program, but they are run by a private company.

Councillor Linda Nixon voted against issuing the Request for Proposal, saying it amounted to supporting a specific private business. Hers was the sole vote of dissent.

Secondary suite owners complain of business license fee

The City of Revelstoke has topped 1,000 business licenses for the first time ever, but the recent surge is mostly due to a new policy of making owners of legal secondary suites  hold a license.

And that has some home owners complaining of unfairness.

“Specifically, only owners of houses with CONFORMING secondary suites are assessed this new  fee,” wrote Ilya Storm in a letter to city hall. “People who own multiple houses in Revelstoke  rent all but one of  them without a similar license. Non-resident house owners rent out houses without a business license. Additionally, houses with non-conforming secondary suites escape this new fee. Fundamentally,  these situations are  identical: a property owner is earning income from their real estate asset through long-term rental. However the city is not treating them equally. This is inherently unfair.”

Storm’s letter was one of two sent to the city complaining about the license fee.

“This raises concerns about fairness,” said councillor Connie Brothers. “If I pay the fees to have a suite, and then we’re not enforcing that bylaw, then why should I bother going through the motions of getting my approval?”

Coun. Scott Duke, who runs a property management company, said he gets lots of feedback on this issue. “When the staff is looking into it, I want them to send letters out explaining to the residents why we’re implementing these things, so they just don’t get a bill and they know why we’re doing it,” he said.

Speaking broadly, coun. Aaron Orlando said he hoped the city looked at density issues as it moves forward with a new zoning bylaw.

“What I sense is citizens wondering where we’re going with all these things,” he said.

Council asked for a staff report on the issue.

Council supports adventure park

Council agreed to write a letter of support for the proposed Revelstoke Adventure Park.

Mayor Mark McKee spoke in support of the park, saying it would increase tourism and create jobs.

“My only concern with the adventure park is making sure our watershed is protected,” he said. “The impression I’m under with everybody is the watershed is well protected and that is my only concern.”

Councillor Linda Nixon asked that watershed protection be specifically mentioned in the letter.

 

 

 

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