"City of Vernon named finalist in Open for Business Awards"

The City of Vernon has been named one of the finalists for the 2014 Open for Business Awards, which recognize communities that support small business through local-government measures aligned with the BC Small Business Accord.

“I think that the fact that we have been nominated in consecutive years for the Open for Business Awards demonstrates the efforts that our administration has put toward initiatives that assist and support business,” said Mayor Rob Sawatzky. “I congratulate council for providing that direction for our administration.”

The applications are evaluated based on how the communities enhance small-business competitiveness, recognize the contributions of small businesses to the community, and promote the principles of the BC Small Business Accord. The roundtable noted the 2014 applications are the strongest to date.

“It is nice to be recognized by the Province of British Columbia and the BC Small Business Roundtable as a finalist for the Open for Business Awards for the second year in a row,” said Kevin Poole, Economic Development Officer for the City of Vernon. “We’re very proud of our innovate initiatives such as the creation of an economic development planner position to handle commercial applications, or being the first community in B.C. to participate in the BC Business Counts Business Retention and Expansion program, or our partnership with RDNO in creating a searchable employment lands inventory. There is always room for improvement, but we are definitely making progress and are on the right track.”

Along with Vernon, the roundtable named Delta, Grand Forks, Kelowna, City of Langley, Nelson, Parksville, Port Coquitlam, Revelstoke, Salmon Arm, Smithers, Surrey and Whistler.

To promote an "open-for-business" culture, the Province is providing awards of $10,000 to each winning community to support the implementation of measures that benefit small business. Winners will be announced on Sept. 24 at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) annual conference in Whistler.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: Sept 9, 2014


"Road update: 39 St & 30 Ave"

From September 9 – 19, road construction between 39 Street and 40 Street along 30 Ave will be taking place in order to connect storm, sanitary and water lines to water mains. Hours of work will be from 7 am – 5 pm. One lane will remain open for continual single-lane alternating traffic at all times. Please obey all signs and flaggers onsite.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: Sept 8, 2014

 

"Integrated Transportation Framework introduced at City of Vernon Council"

The completed Integrated Transportation Framework (ITF), which takes a long-range approach to sustainable infrastructure management, was presented to and endorsed by Council today. The framework is designed to be an innovative strategy that reduces costs for building and maintaining Vernon roads while upholding the high functions and standards Vernon residents expect. The ITF includes dedicated funding for road construction and renewal, greater emphasis on connecting existing road networks and prioritizing high-volume roads for reconstruction. The plan also ensures that the ongoing maintenance of road infrastructure can be achieved while reducing the pressure on Vernon taxpayers with an approximate annual savings of $1.7 million.

“The ITF meets and enhances the City’s goal of being a sustainable community,” said City Infrastructure Engineer Mark Dowhaniuk, one of the architects of the framework. “We’re making sure we’re spending the money on roads where it is most needed. This is a proactive rather than reactive approach, one that makes certain that we have dedicated funds to sustain and improve road infrastructure indefinitely.”

The ITF is the City’s first detailed study on long-term road infrastructure needs, and that takes into account regular, planned road upkeep by determining which routes have the greatest load—and therefore the greatest need for reconstruction. Vernon residents can expect to see more road construction on high-traffic roads in the future. However, using innovative techniques—including slightly narrowed roadways and recycled road materials—roadway reconstruction, improvement and maintenance budgets will balance with available funding.

“One of the most important things we can do for the City of Vernon is to provide a plan for sustaining and maintaining the assets and services of the community for our citizens: for the present and for the future,” said Mayor Robert Sawatzky. “This plan is the product of a long, intensive and insightful process that provides an important, detailed blueprint for maintaining and caring for our infrastructure assets. Staff are to be commended for carrying out the work and Council should be commended for supporting these important efforts to protect the investments of our citizens. Many communities opt for pretty, ‘photo-op’ projects, but a plan like this is probably the most important municipal housekeeping effort we can provide for our citizens.”

More information on the ITF is available on the City’s website at www.vernon.ca/index.php/projects/asset-management-integrated-transportation-framework.

News Release Document - 36Kb PDF
Posted: Sept 8, 2014


"Open house for Pottery Road reconstruction"

The public is invited to attend the Pottery Road Reconstruction Project open house at the City of Vernon Council Chambers on Wednesday, September 3, 2014 from 4:30 to 6 pm. For more information about this open house, please contact Richard Bedard, City of Vernon municipal design technician, at 250.550.3590 or rbedard@vernon.ca.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: Sept 2, 2014


"City of Vernon local election nomination papers available September 2"

Potential candidates in the November 15 local election will be able to pick up nomination documents for the offices of Mayor (one vacancy) and Councillor (six vacancies) from Vernon City Hall beginning September 2. Nomination papers must be filed between 9 am on Tuesday, September 30, and 4pm on Friday, October 10, excluding statutory holidays and weekends. There is a $100 refundable deposit on all nomination packages, and arrangements should be made with the Chief or Deputy Chief Election Officer to pick up your papers at City Hall office during regular office hours. Nominations will not be accepted after the deadline.

You may run as a candidate in the 2014 election if:

  • you are a Canadian citizen;
  • you are at least 18 years old on November 15, 2014;
  • have lived in BC for at least 6 months; and
  • are not disqualified from holding office, or otherwise disqualified by law.


In order to be nominated as a Candidate, you will require two (2) nominators who must be qualified electors of the jurisdiction you are running in. You do not have to live in the jurisdiction in which you are running for office. If you are elected to office, you will be expected to serve a 4-year term which officially begins by being sworn in at the Inaugural Council Meeting on December 1, 2014. Holding office can be time consuming.

In addition to attending regular meetings (2nd and 4th Monday of every month at 8:40 am, 1:30 pm and 5:30 pm for public hearings) you will be asked to sit on advisory committees, boards or commissions that also require significant time. You might consider talking to a current or former Councillor to find out how much time you will be expected to commit.

For more information on the nomination process or to make an appointment to pick up nomination papers at City Hall, please contact Patti Bridal, Chief Election Officer, by calling 250-550-3524 or emailing pbridal@vernon.ca or Sue Blakely, Deputy Chief Election Officer, at 250-550-3526 or sblakely@vernon.ca.

News Release Document - 39Kb PDF
Posted: August 28, 2014


"September camps available in event of continued job action"

In the event that the current teacher job action is unresolved before the scheduled September start date for Vernon schools, Greater Vernon Recreation Services is continuing to offer many of its summer camp options, and expanding them to include experiential, educational and/or physical activity components.

In addition to its current programming, Greater Vernon Recreation Services are also partnering with the Kingfisher Interpretive Centre to provide several great programs for children in grades 1 through 5. At the Kingfisher camp, for example, the kids can enjoy a day of outdoor play and experiential environmental education. They will have an opportunity to explore and learn about an interior cedar hemlock rainforest: the plants that grow there, local First Nation traditional ways of life and knowledge, and about the salmon that call the Shuswap River home. The camps will run Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 3 pm, and transportation will be provided to and from activities. Parents can register for as many or as few days as they like.

For more information on these or any other programs, please contact Greater Vernon Recreation Services at 250-545-6035 or visit www.greatervernonrecreation.ca.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: August 25, 2014


"Upcoming road closures and railway crossing reconstruction: September 2 – 6"

Starting September 2, CN crews will be reconstructing the 48 Avenue railway crossing due to failing railway track; the work is expected to take two days to complete. During construction, 48 Avenue from 31 Street to Anderson Way will be closed to through-traffic.

The 43 Avenue crossing is scheduled to be reconstructed following the completion of the 48 Avenue crossing with an expected start date of September 4. The work is expected to take two days to complete. During construction, 43 Avenue from Hwy 97 to 31 Street will be closed to through-traffic.

Motorists are advised to obey traffic control devices and follow posted detour routes.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: August 21, 2014


"Fire ban still in place for Greater Vernon area"

Vernon Fire-Rescue Services (VFRS) would like to remind Greater Vernon residents and visitors that the provincial fire ban is still in effect, including prohibitions on all campfires and open burning, and will remain in effect until the public is informed otherwise.

Specifically, this open fire prohibition applies to:

  • Campfires or backyard fires, fire pits, outdoor stoves or chimneys;
  • The burning of any waste, slash or other materials;
  • The burning of stubble or grass; and
  • The use of fireworks, sky lanterns or burning barrels of any size or description.
This prohibition does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus with a CSA or ULC rating that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, as long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres.
There is a zero tolerance policy and offenders could be subject to fines from VFRS or the Wildfire Management Branch of the Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resources.

News Release Document - 38Kb PDF
Posted: August 20, 2014


"Plaque to be unveiled acknowledging Canada’s internment operations"

The public is invited to the unveiling of a memorial plaque commemorating the 100th anniversary of Canada’s first national internment operations at 11 am on Friday, August 22. The unveiling at the Sutton Building (2749 30 St) Sunflower mural in downtown Vernon is part of a wave of 100 plaque unveilings at 100 different locations across Canada. Mayor Rob Sawatzky and Colin Mayes, Member of Parliament for Okanagan-Shuswap, will be in attendance for the unveiling.

“The internment operations affected tens of thousands of people from many ethno-cultural communities over a period of nearly six years, causing inter-generational trauma that has been referenced by some scholars as a crippling legacy yet to be undone,” said Andrea Malysh, program manager for Canadian First World War Internment Recognition Fund and an internee descendant.

During Canada’s internment operations, which took place between 1914 and 1920, thousands of immigrants were imprisoned, stripped of wealth, forced into heavy labour, disenfranchised and subjected to other state-sanctioned censures.

“Recognition of the historical wrongs that occurred against our own citizens is the essential first step in moving toward the resolution of the effects of those wrongs that we all wish to achieve,” said Mayor Sawatzky.

“It is important for all Canadians to understand the full scope of our history, including its more difficult periods,” said Mr. Mayes. “The unveiling of these commemorative plaques is an opportunity to remember and to honour all the victims of Canada’s first national internment operations.”

Plaques recipients are also the St. Mary’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church and St. Josaphat’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in Vernon. For more information about Vernon’s memorial plaque unveiling, please email Andrea Malysh at malysh@internmentcanada.ca or visit www.intermentcanada.ca.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF

Poster - 501kb PDF
Posted: August 12, 2014

  100 yr anniversary

"Hockey league starts September 16, open to players, teams and officials"

Greater Vernon Recreation Services is inviting individual players or teams, 19 years or over, along with scorekeepers and officials to take part in the 2014-2015 Boston Pizza Hockey League (BPHL) starting September 16. The non-contact league will have 30 games over the regular season plus double-elimination playoffs.

League coordinator Mike Knights said BPHL is suitable for players of all calibres.

“We have some ex-Junior A players—some of whom have played for our very own Vernon Vipers—the odd ex-NHLer, and we also have career recreational players,” said Knights.

League fees for teams that register prior to September 1 are $7,500, including taxes; as of September 1, fees go up to $8,000. BPHL will create teams for individual players, who can sign up for $500.

“Our discipline committee has really built a clean and skilled league over the years,” said Rob Bauml, player, league veteran, and former league president. “It is a great mix of competitive hockey in a competitive framework that allows for reasonable contact between experienced players. We don’t tolerate violent play and behavior but the games are still fun and competitive while ensuring we can all go to work the next day.”

Interested teams, individual players, referees or scorekeepers can find more information by emailing Knights at mknights@vernon.ca or by calling 250-550-3669.

News Release Document - 51Kb PDF
Posted: August 6, 2014


"Road updates for Aug 11-15: 37 Street and 25 Avenue; 27 Street and 45 Avenue"

From August 11 - 14, City of Vernon crews will be sampling existing wells located along 37 Street near 25 Avenue, reducing traffic to single-lane traffic.
Please obey signs and flaggers on site and take alternate routes if possible.

From August 12 - 15, crews will be drilling and installing two wells along 27 Street and 45 Avenue, reducing traffic to single-lane traffic.
Flaggers will be onsite to direct traffic.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: August 6, 2014

 

Click on image


"Recreation Services expanding accessibility programs for children and youth"

The City of Vernon and Greater Vernon Recreation Services are pleased to provide greater accessibility to regional recreation programs by expanding discount programs for children and youth with disabilities. Over the past year, Recreation Services staff have been working with Bren Currie, the team leader for Children and Youth with Special Needs, and Annette Sharkey from the Social Planning Council. Their goal was to develop a discount plan for children and youth who are under the age of 19 with disabilities and who are eligible for special needs services.

“This recreation discount pass is changing lives and we are very thankful to have this program in our community,” said Sharkey.

The programs included in this discount include regular or drop-in passes for public swim times and weight room use, and drop-in and punch passes for Aquafit classes including morning AquaAdvance, Aqualight, and Deep Water classes, and all AquaTherapy classes.

Doug Ross, the director of Recreation Services, said this move expands existing accessibility programs. In the spring of 2007, Recreation Services introduced a 75-per-cent Affordable Access Pass for low-income adults who were receiving regular income assistance benefits, guaranteed income supplements for seniors, or Canada Pension Plan for disabilities, as well as for people with disabilities or persistent multiple barriers.

“Recreation Services is glad that we have been able to expand our Affordable Access Pass program to include these youth and hope that they will be able to participate more often,” said Ross.
For more information in the discount programs, eligibility criteria or other programs and services offered by Greater Vernon Recreation Services, please visit www.greatervernonrecreation.ca or see the new Fall Leisure Guide, available August 8.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Aug 05, 2014


"Crews repair three water main breaks in Vernon"

Crews are onsite at three water main failures this morning. Currently, the failures have been isolated and the onsite supervisor is determining the priority sequence for repair based on the severity of the breaks. The area of interruption is as follows:

On 18 St from Pottery Rd to 20 Ave
Along 18 Ave to 15 St and North to Pottery Rd
On Pottery Rd from 18 St to 15 St

Affected customers in this area have been notified and may be without water until the repairs are complete.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: July 31, 2014


"Bylaw changes allow liquor service on sidewalk patios"

The City of Vernon has updated its bylaws to allow liquor service on sidewalk patiosfollowing a request from the soon-to-be-opened Naked Pig BBQ and Smokehouse. The restaurant, owned by Marten Brewing Company Ltd., requested in April 2014 that Council change their Sidewalk and Boulevard Use Permit Policy, which has been in place since 2005 and outlines the application process and criteria for sidewalk patios, sidewalk displays and mobile vending. Liquor service on sidewalk patios was prohibited in the policy.

After consultations with the Downtown Vernon Association, changes to the policy were drafted. On Monday, Council supported changes and amended the Sidewalk and Boulevard Use Permit Policy to allow the provision of liquor service on sidewalk patios. They also included patio design criteria, hours of operations and fee changes to cover administration and lease rates. The Liquor Control and Licensing Branch of BC approvals are also required for liquor patio service.

The City Centre Neighbourhood Plan supports the policy changes in an effort to foster an attractive, lively, vibrant downtown. More sidewalk patios can help foster greater economic activity and a positive downtown atmosphere. While well-designed sidewalk patios can benefit business owners economically by expanding seating capacity and attract customers, patrons get to benefit from sitting outdoors to take full advantage of the regions climate. Patios also provide opportunities for people to use the sidewalks in different ways and usually for longer time periods. Active streets bustling with people enhance the sidewalk experience, increase safety and are visually interesting for passersby.

Businesses interested in developing a sidewalk patio or display area are encouraged to contact the City of Vernon Bylaw Division at 250-550-3505 or email bylaw@vernon.ca

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: July 16, 2014


"Second-quarter City of Vernon utility bills delayed"

City of Vernon second-quarter utility bills received through the mail or accessed through MyCity at the City’s website will be delayed for up to two weeks. This delay is due to the change in fees following the implementation of the Multi-Material British Columbia (MMBC) recycling program, which began May 19, 2014. The fee recalculations are part of completing a smooth transition in billing services following this implementation, as well as ensuring that all statements are correct and consistent with the changes. The City expects that updated utility statements will be available on or before July 28.

News Release Document - 48Kb PDF
Posted: July 16, 2014


"City Bylaw Information: Large Vehicles in Residential Areas"

The City of Vernon’s traffic and zoning bylaws collaborate in ensuring that large vehicles are controlled when parking or visiting residential areas within the city.

Many Vernon residents have expressed concerns about commercial vehicles or other large vehicles parking or travelling through residential areas. Some of these concerns include fumes, noise from early morning startups or late evening arrivals, monopolizing parking, concerns over the safety of children, lengthy periods of idling, or even just the esthetics of having a large truck next door. While we do not restrict large vehicles travelling through residential areas, unless the route is marked as “no heavy trucks” due to engineering concerns, regulations are in place to deal with more ongoing concerns.

The traffic bylaw restricts on-street parking in residentially zoned areas between the hours of 7 pm and 7 am (overnight) for all commercial vehicles over seven (7) meters in length, for all commercial vehicles over 1134 kilograms, or for all vehicles designed to burn diesel fuel that are not passenger cars or pickup trucks.

The City’s zoning bylaw provides further restriction on private property - it does not allow a commercial vehicle in excess of 4100 kilograms licensed gross vehicle weight on a lot in a residential zone unless parked or stored in a fully enclosed permanent building. Short term parking during daylight hours for the purposes of delivery, service or construction on the property is permitted. Large pickup trucks, used primarily as family passenger vehicles, are exempt from these provisions.

These regulations work in combination to ensure that reasonable access to property is maintained, and restrict the conflicts that can occur with other residential uses or with the residents themselves.

To make a complaint, call the City of Vernon Bylaw Services Division at 250-550-3505 or email bylaw@vernon.ca .

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: July 16, 2014


"City receives COR Incentive Cheque"

The City of Vernon has received a Certificate of Recognition (COR) incentive cheque from WorkSafe BC in the amount of $43,713. This is the first of three annual cheques that the City will receive following the successful re-audit of the Safety Management System (SMS) and Stay At Work/Return To Work in 2013. In 2011, as part of the WorkSafe BC (WSBC) COR program, the City underwent an audit of SMS and Stay at Work/Return to Work program. Having passed the SMS portion of the audit, the City was eligible to receive a 10 per cent incentive payment from WSBC based on annual insurance premiums.

“This is a great achievement for the City considering it is one of only 31 local governments and naturally aligned organizations to achieve COR across British Columbia,” said It highlights the level of commitment and continuous improvement towards health and safety in the work place that City employees demonstrate at all levels throughout the organization.” In keeping with a council resolution, this money will be used to increase City compliance with WorkSafeBC regulations and worker health and safety. For more information on the COR program please visit http://www.worksafebc.com/insurance/partners_program/default.asp

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: July 16, 2014


"Campfire ban in effect starting July 16"

Effective at noon on Wednesday, July 16, in accordance with the provincially issued ban, all campfires will be prohibited throughout Vernon and the surrounding North Okanagan area.

The City of Vernon will adhere to the provincial ban, and this prohibition will remain in place until the public is notified that it has been rescinded. This step is being taken to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety. The fire danger rating is currently “high” throughout the North Okanagan region, with scattered pockets of “extreme”. With the current trend of warm and dry weather, wildfires in the region have displayed very aggressive behaviour and required additional fire suppression resources. Human-caused wildfires can divert critical resources and crews from responding to naturally occurring wildfires.

This prohibition applies to open fires of any size, fires with a burn registration number, industrial burning, fireworks, tiki torches, sky lanterns and burning barrels. The prohibition does not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus with a CSA or ULC rating that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, as long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres. To report a wildfire or unattended campfire, please call 911. For the latest information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, go to: www.bcwildfire.ca
A map of the area covered by the campfire ban is available online at: http://bit.ly/1sfqVr9

News Release Document - 38Kb PDF
Posted: July 16, 2014


Update #4: Power restored to affected area

Vernon, B.C. (3:15 pm) - The City of Vernon is reporting that power has been restored to all residents affected by the gas line break earlier today and evacuated residents of the Ukrainian Village Apartments are returning to their homes. Fortis BC is continuing repairs on the line and estimate that 317 customers are affected and will remain without gas until the line is repaired, and Fortis BC crews have completed the relighting process, which may be midnight tonight.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF

Update 3: Gas leak contained

Vernon, B.C. (1:30 pm) - Vernon Fire Rescue (VFRS) is reporting that the gas line break has been contained. Gas will remain turned off while Fortis BC crews repair the damage.
Gas and power will be restored by late afternoon

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF

"Gas leak near downtown Vernon, 72 evacuated as precaution"

A natural gas leak that occurred during road construction near downtown Vernon has prompted Vernon Fire-Rescue Services (VFRS) to evacuate 72 residents of the Ukrainian Village Apartments on 27 Ave and 35 St. VFRS, the City of Vernon and Fortis are also advising people in the affected area of 27 Ave between 33 St and 35 St to stay inside with windows and doors closed while crews tend to the leak.

Air conditioned buses have been brought to the site for residents so they can be kept safe and comfortable while crews are working. VFRS Deputy Chief Lawrie Skolrood said it is expected that the leak will be repaired by 1 pm or sooner.

News Release Document - 32Kb PDF

Gas leak in downtown Vernon – 27th Ave and 35th St

City of Vernon crews are reporting a gas leak at 27 Ave and 35 St in downtown Vernon. FortisBC, Vernon Fire-Rescue Services and Emergency Response have all been notified and are onsite. Residents in the area are being evacuated as a safety precaution. More details to follow.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: July 9, 2014

 

"Rescue at pool highlights importance of drowning prevention awareness"

The City of Vernon and Greater Vernon Recreation Services are reminding the public that Lifesaving Society National Drowning Prevention Week is July 20-26, 2014, and are sharing the story of a recent rescue at the Vernon Aquatic Centre. The family in this story, whose names are withheld to protect their privacy, have agreed to share this story to underscore the importance of vigilance and awareness, and hope that by sharing their experience, they can help to ensure that this doesn't happen to another family.

In early June, a two-year-old boy swimming with his family—both parents plus an older and younger sibling—had a close call at the Vernon Aquatic Centre when he became separated from his mother and, possibly caught up playing with older children, drifted into deeper water. His mother did a head count and realized her son wasn’t within her reach. At the same time, the child’s father noticed him motionless in the pool and quickly moved to his son, calling for help.

The lifeguards had just completed a rotation, which involves changing guarding locations and doing a head count, when they heard the boy’s father. The child was passed to a lifeguard on the deck, who immediately recognized that the boy was in respiratory distress: discolouration of the skin (cyanosis), unresponsive and a lack of movement of his chest, expelling fluid. The lifeguard immediately initiated lifesaving procedures until the boy began showing signs of recovery.

News Release Document - 38Kb PDF
Posted: July 4, 2014


"Canada Day celebrations will include unveiling memorial to Councillor Nicol"

Canada Day celebrations in Vernon will include unveiling a memorial at Polson Park for Vernon Councillor Patrick Nicol-who passed away earlier this year after a long battle with cancer-during formal Canada Day ceremonies. The Polson Park Canada Day event runs from 10 am to 5 pm, with the formal ceremony beginning at 1 pm. Dignitaries will include Mayor Rob Sawatzky, MLA (Vernon-Monashee) Eric Foster, Citizen of the Year Brian Jackson and Queen Silver Star Cheyenne Krog; Councillor Nicol’s brother, John Nicol, will also be on hand. Other activities taking place at Polson Park include an opening prayer from a member of the Okanagan Indian Band, face painting, live music, food vendors and birthday cake.

Canada Day evening events will be held between 7:30 and 11 pm at the DND grounds, located between Hwy 97 and Mission Road, one kilometre south of Vernon. The event will feature musical performances by the Legendary Lake Monsters and a family movie followed by the fireworks at approximately 10:30. Entrance to the grounds from Hwy 97 is one-way only, and all traffic following the event must exit via Mission Road. Traffic control professionals will be on site to direct and monitor safe entrance and exit for vehicles. It is expected there will be some congestion and drivers are asked to be extra cautious, allow for plenty of time and watch carefully for pedestrians throughout the site.

Vernon Fire-Rescue Services, with assistance from BX, Swan Lake and Coldstream Fire Departments, and the Ministry of Forests suppression crew will be onsite to determine if the conditions are safe for fireworks, and viewers are asked to respect the security perimeters established for public safety. Leading up to the fireworks, pyrotechnicians will be evaluating weather and display conditions carefully to ensure public safety and compliance with regulations. The City will be providing updates via Twitter and Facebook on weather conditions that may affect the start time for the fireworks. Entrance to the fireworks display is free and family friendly, but attendees are reminded to leave pets at home, and to bring a jacket, blankets, lawn chair, radio, flashlight and snacks.

Both events received sponsorship from Heritage Canada – The Government of Canada.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: June 27, 2014


"City of Vernon Parks Master Plan moves into next stage"

The City of Vernon continues to seek the public’s feedback in the development of the Parks Master Plan. In the coming months, the City will be meeting with stakeholder groups and going out into the community and local parks to better understand user needs that will help set the direction for the future of Vernon’s parks. Additionally, the City is asking local residents to provide support for the plan by submitting photos of Vernon parks or by becoming a park ambassador.

“We want to see what you love about Vernon parks and your pictures say a thousand words,” said Cleo Corbett, long range planner for the City of Vernon “We are also looking for volunteers to become Park Ambassadors to periodically monitor and observe local parks over the next few months. Park Ambassadors will be asked to attend a one-hour training session and will be given tools to monitor how the park is being used, what is working well and what could be improved.”

To find out more about becoming a Park Ambassador or to submit a photo that could be featured in the Parks Master Plan or used to promote Vernon parks, please email parks@vernon.ca.

Photo: This beautiful fall shot of Poslon Park was submitted by Loryl Shields-Tkachuk as part of the City’s request for local park photos.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: June 19, 2014

  Parks Master Plan

"Predator Ridge Fire Hall construction well underway"

The foundation forms are set, and construction is well underway on the site of the new Predator Ridge fire hall. Operated as Station #3 Predator Ridge, the hall will be managed by Vernon Fire - Rescue, and integrated into the current deployment system. The two-bays at the station will house an engine and a water tender, and the building will include a training room, kitchen facilities and a hose tower.

Vernon Fire - Rescue will review paid-per-call tier assignments and roster requirements, in conjunction with the annual fall recruit. Visitors and residents at Predator Ridge will see the construction underway on the south side of the entrance road, with completion of Station #3 expected around the end of October.

Photos: VFRS Chief Keith Green (L) and Deputy Chief Jack Blair (R) visit the site of the Predator Ridge Fire Hall, due to be completed in late October 2014.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: June 17, 2014

  Predator Ridge Fire Hall
 
Predator Ridge Fire Hall

"New Visitor Information Centre opens door, welcomes tourists"

Visitor services will continue uninterrupted during the move to Vernon’s new Visitor Information Centre this week. The mobile visitor booth was set up at the highway Visitor Centre while the move was underway on Tuesday, June 10. Staff opened the doors of the new Centre immediately, and welcomed almost a dozen visitors while the boxes were being unpacked. The new Visitor Information Centre is located at 3004 39 Ave (near the Civic Arena).

The City invites all residents and visitors to stop in and see the new Centre. More improvements to the Civic Arena block are expected in the future and the City’s long-term plans for the site include creation of a park.

Please check out the website for great ideas for you and your guests throughout the year at www.tourismvernon.com

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: June 12, 2014

  COV Visitors Centre

"Parks survey participants get chance to play"

Parks appear to be a top priority for Vernonites. Over 1,000 responses were received in the recent Parks Master Plan Satisfaction and Priorities Survey conducted by the City of Vernon. Long Range Planner for the City, Cleo Corbett, expressed her gratitude to everyone who participated in the survey.

“This feedback is important to us,” said Corbett. “We are currently analyzing the responses received and results will be available soon, along with information on next steps and more opportunity for Vernon residents to provide input into the City’s parks.”

Blake Reynolds, Ken Don, Joanne Pears and Scott Stolberg were the lucky winners of a prize draw for answering the survey. Prizes included a 10 punch pool pass or a $50 gift certificate for a recreation program at Greater Vernon Recreation Centre.

Photo: (L to R) Scott Stolberg, Cleo Corbett and Blake Reynolds get some play time in at one of Vernon’s local parks. Stolberg and Reynolds were draw prize winners for completing a Parks Master Plan Satisfaction and Priorities Survey conducted by the City of Vernon.

News Release Document - 51Kb PDF
Posted: June 12, 2014

  Parks Survey

"Cleanup continues following Tuesday storm"

City crews continue the cleanup of Vernon streets following the severe rain and hail storm on Tuesday afternoon. Storm water sewer systems drained properly during the storm although the high volume of water exceeded the sewer capacity in many areas of the city, including the downtown core. Asphalt in front of the library was lifted by the storm water and engineers are assessing the damage. However, most repair and cleanup work to other damaged asphalt in the city will be completed by Wednesday evening.

Some of the City’s buildings experienced flood damage. A restoration company was called to the Science Centre in Polson Park immediately following the storm to assess and mediate damage after water seeped into the classrooms. Additionally, the main fire hall downtown had up to two centimetres of water in the basement. The extent of damage to both buildings is still unknown.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: June 4, 2014


"Changes to parking fee structure in the downtown core near completion"

The final touches on designated downtown parking areas, due to be completed by the end of June, will provide options for longer stays at a lower rate for downtown business owners, employees and their customers. Crews are in the process of installing a permit dispenser and electrical power along with re-signing and re-painting lines in the 29 Ave. parking lot in downtown Vernon, the last step in implementing a new parking fee structure approved by Council in mid-April.

Long-term parking in the Community Services Building (CSB) lot near City Hall, the 29 Ave. parking lot, the 25 Ave. parking lot and the Parkade have all been approved at a rate of $60 per month. In addition, the major lots (CSB, 29 Ave. and Parkade) will allow hourly or day use rates at $.50 per hour or $4 per day - half of the metered rate for on-street parking. The 29 Ave. lot will be split into two areas: monthly parking and day use, with an on-site permit dispenser to allow the purchase of hourly or day-use permits. Sixty numbered spaces will remain available for monthly parking.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
Posted: June 4, 2014


"Property maintenance bylaws protect safety and property values"

Every summer, the City of Vernon receives complaints regarding overgrown or uncared-for properties, lawns or other areas of vegetation. These properties can reflect negatively on neighborhoods and reduce surrounding property values. In addition, there is potential for the spread of noxious weeds or invasive plant species when these go to seed. Under the City’s Good Neighbour bylaw, property owners are responsible for maintaining their property as well as the adjacent boulevard and lane areas. Additionally, the City’s Traffic bylaw is in effect to increase visibility and limit plant growth near intersections and pedestrian areas.

“Quite frequently, it is the small things that make the difference: the trimming of a hedge, removing sucker shoots from a tree in the vision clearance area or the mowing of a boulevard,” said Clint Kanester, manager of bylaw compliance for the City. “It’s all about getting along and thinking of others while being a part of the community.”

Property owners are responsible for:

• Cutting any vegetation growing into the lane or along the edge of the lane adjacent to your property, and keeping property clear of overgrowth or accumulation of dead landscaping, vegetation, noxious weeds or other growths;

• Removing any waste vegetation, grass clippings or rubbish from the boulevard or lane adjacent to your property, removing all rubbish materials that accumulate on the property, and preventing overflow or accumulation of rubbish around any container on private property;

• Trimming any vegetation extending over property lines into the right of way that effects vehicles or pedestrians, and trimming any vegetation within the vision clearance area near intersection corners (street or lane) to the Traffic Bylaw requirements.

For more information regarding these or any City bylaws, please contact the Bylaw Division at 250-550-2505 or by email at bylaw@vernon.ca

News Release Document - 39Kb PDF
Posted: June 3, 2014


"City of Vernon announces 2014 Sustainability Award recipients"

The City of Vernon is proud to announce the winners of the 2014 Sustainability Awards for outstanding achievements in four categories: Building and Development, Sustainable Business, Community Sustainability and Youth Initiative. The following award recipients contribute to community sustainability through environmental stewardship, economic viability and social inclusiveness.

Building and Development: Kindale Developmental Association, The Land Trust and Constructive Concepts Ltd. collaborated on the Vernon Veridian project, a 20-unit townhouse complex on 24 Ave that offers affordable housing to Vernon residents. Units in Vernon Veridian are rented at a rate of 30 per cent of the tenant’s income and the central location offers residents easy access to employment and services in the nearby city centre.

Sustainable Business: VantageOne Credit Union commits to providing financial and nonfinancial support to local partners and projects within Vernon. With a focus on improving health and wellbeing, VantageOne has consistently provided support throughout the community for sustainability initiatives, including education, health, arts and culture, environment and amateur sports for all ages.

Community Sustainability: Allan Brooks Nature Centre (ANBC) continues to work with the community on environmental initiatives with social and economic implications. ABNC consistently provides information about the environment, sustainability, ecosystems and habitat to its visitors and connects the local community with the environment around us. ABNC works in partnership with government agencies and other community organizations to support and encourage conservation and stewardship of important habitats in the North Okanagan.

Youth Initiative:The Ozone Class at Ellison Elementary School, with support from teacher Kim Ondrik, organized and hosted the 2013 and 2014 "Be the Change" Festival to provide a venue of celebration, learning and appreciation for Earth Day in Vernon. The Ozone class also takes part in community clean-ups, volunteering, and promoting
sustainable values in their everyday learning and practice. They have demonstrated clear contributions towards our community through enhanced public awareness, leadership and understanding the true value of sustainability.

Ellison Elementary School Ozone Class:
Youth Initiative
VantageOne Credit Union:
Sustainable Business
Kindale Developmental Association, The Land Trust and Constructive Concepts Ltd.:
Building and Development
Allan Brooks Nature Centre:
Community Sustainability
       
       
News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: May 27, 2014
     


 


"Provincial Bike to Work Week Campaign starts Sunday with Community Bike Fest"

North Okanagan’s fifth annual Bike to Work Week Campaign kicks off May 25 from 1 to 3:30pm at Polson Park with a Community Bike Fest that will include an obstacle challenge as well as a bike parade led by Vernon Mayor Rob Sawatzky. The event is supported by the City of Vernon, the Bike to Work Society, the Government of B.C., and local business sponsors and volunteers.

“The new bike obstacle challenge will also feature Mayor Jim Garlick and Councillor Maria Besso from Coldstream and members of the media,” Sawatzky. “It will be a fun and unique way to create interest in the Bike to Work Campaign.”

The Community Bike Fest will include bike safety education for families, a Community Policing Bike Rodeo and bike engraving. BrainTrust Canada will also be hosting a helmet check station. Additionally, there will be a bike decorating station, bike parade, face painting, entertainment by the Mark Rose Big Band, and other community-sponsored activities.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: May 22, 2014


"Public invited to open house to discuss replacement ice sheet"

City of Vernon Recreation Services and MQN Architects are hosting an open house in the Grand Room at Kal Tire Place on Wednesday, May 28 from 6:30 – 8:30 pm for the Replacement Sheet of Ice Project. The open house is for facility user groups—both ice users and dry floor renters—and any interested citizens from the greater Vernon area, including Vernon, Coldstream, BX and Swan Lake. This event will be an opportunity for groups or individuals to view the options currently being considered and supply input on the proposed options. This input will assist with the development of the building program and help establish required facility attributes.

The open house will start with an approximately 30-minute walkthrough and presentation of the preliminary plans before opening the floor for questions and discussion. The options being presented include twinning Kal Tire Place to the north and west, twinning the Priest Valley Arena to the west and east, and a stand-alone option. Groups or individuals interested in attending the open house are asked to RSVP to City of Vernon Recreation Services by calling 250-550-3257 or emailing abookings@vernon.ca.

News Release Document - 51Kb PDF
Posted: May 22, 2014


"Scooter Rodeo a great way to learn skills and safety tips"

The City of Vernon Community Policing Office, in partnership with the RCMP, Schuburt Centre and Southward Medical Supplies, will be hosting a Scooter Rodeo on Thursday, June 5 from 1-4 pm at the Schubert Centre. This course is free of charge for individuals or families that already have a scooter or are considering a scooter purchase in the near future.

“Scooters are great way to stay socially active if you are having mobility challenges,” said Vernon Community Policing Coordinator, Rachael Zubick. “However, like anything else, it is important to know how to be safe and keep others safe while you are using the scooter.”

Participants will learn about scooter safety, the rules of the road and basic maintenance, as well as get a chance to test their expertise on the practical skills course.

“The scooter safety course is fun way to make sure getting around town is as safe as possible for scooter owners,” said Zubick.

For further information or to register please call the Vernon Community Policing Office at 250-550-7840.

News Release Document -34Kb PDF
Posted: May 19, 2014

 
 

"City of Vernon calls for action on invasive mussels"

The City of Vernon is asking senior levels of government to take action to prevent the spread of invasive zebra and quagga mussels into Okanagan waterways. Zebra and quagga mussels are closely related mollusks that originate from Europe and are non-native to North America. They live in fresh water, such as lakes and rivers, are invasive, known to encrust and corrode hard surfaces and cause serious harm to waters where they become established. The cost to infrastructure such as clogged intake and outfall pipes can be enormous. As the mussel population increases, they remove important nutrients from the water and kill off native fish. Because their shells are small and sharp, they can cut bare feet, requiring people to wear shoes at beaches and in the water, and the smell of rotting mussels can be strong.

At its meeting on April 28, Council approved sending a letter asking the Provincial and Federal governments to take action to prevent the spread of zebra and quagga mussels into the Okanagan. Such actions could include providing more training for conservation officers to identify and respond to the threats of invasive mussels, providing more outreach and education to boat owners and the general public, and giving border officials the power to turn away boats crossing from the United States that are infested with mussels or require that they be decontaminated before crossing.

Residents can also send their own letters asking senior levels of government to take action. More information and letter templates can be found at www.vernon.ca/mussels.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: May 15, 2014


"Proper use of bike lanes helps keep Vernon’s cyclists safe"

The warm weather is spurring more people to ride their bikes to get around town. With so many benefits to cycling, the City of Vernon wants to encourage this mode of transportation and to ensure that riders safely get from Point A to Point B. Clint Kanester, manager of bylaw compliance for the City of Vernon, believes we all have a part to play in cycling safety, particularly regarding the city’s bike lanes.

“Bicycles are a valuable part of how people move across and through our community, so it’s important that we respect the areas set aside for their use,” said Kanester. “Vernon’s bike lanes help provide green transportation opportunities, help promote safe cycling and are an important component of the City’s transportation plan. “

Bike lanes are designated by signs or painted markings on the roadway and are marked with a diamond that designates them as special-use lanes. In more rural areas of Vernon or where there is no designated sidewalk or curb, other white painted lines near the road edge called fog lines designate the vehicular travel portion of the roadway. These helps motorists stay in their lanes and allow the shoulder of the roadway to be used for parking, pedestrians or cycling, unless otherwise marked.

Kanester provided the following tips for safe cycling and bike lane usage:

    • Bike lanes are for cyclist use only, and are not for vehicle parking or pedestrian use, either of which could force cyclists to veer into traffic.
    • Cyclists using bike lanes should travel in the same direction of travel as the vehicle lane next to it.
    • Sometimes, bicycle lanes may be between curbside parking and the lane of traffic and will be well marked by paint. Drivers, please watch for cyclists before opening your vehicle door or pulling into traffic.

News Release Document - 39Kb PDF
Posted: May 15, 2014


"City of Vernon promotes health and safety as part of NAOSH Week"

The City of Vernon Joint Occupational Health & Safety (JOHSC) Committee helped promote North American Occupational Safety & Health (NAOSH) Week, from May 4 – 10, to workers, manager and directors within the City by presenting information sessions and an organization-wide safety challenge. JOHSC received 120 safety challenge entries and warded 64 prizes to City employees.

JOHSC makes recommendations to the City for the improvement of health and safety for everyone within the organization. The committee consults with workers, deals with complaints and identifies unsafe situations. North American Occupational Health & Safety Week is an annual health and safety celebration spanning

North America from Northern Canada to the southern tip of Mexico. This year’s theme was Make Safety a Habit: Getting Home Doesn’t Just Happen. NAOSH was established at the same time as the free trade negotiations were taking place between Canada and Mexico in the mid-1980s. The intent of NAOSH is to spread the message about the importance of health and safety, to change workplace safety culture and reduce workplace injuries.

News Release Document -34Kb PDF
Posted: May 13, 2014

 
 

"City of Vernon releases travel survey findings"

City of Vernon Council heard the findings of the Household Travel Surveys on Monday, May 12, which were part of the City’s Transportation Plan Review. The surveys took place in 2013, when Vernon residents were asked where they travelled, how often and what mode of transportation they chose. Survey findings will be used to shape and update City targets and policies within the Transportation Plan.

Some of the information revealed by the survey included that the vast majority of trips that originate in Vernon on a daily basis—90 per cent—stay within the city. Additionally, 73 per cent of these are to destinations within five kilometres. However, 70 per cent of Vernon-based travel used single-occupant vehicles (SOV) rather than alternate modes of transportation such as walking, cycling, carpooling or transit. The City’s Transportation Plan has a goal of reducing Vernon-based SOV use to 62 per cent by 2038.

As the city grows, the number of trips will increase. If the percentage of SOV stays the same or increases, more and more commuter congestion will occur, particularly during the peak travel times. This congestion would negatively affect the liveability of the city and hinder local businesses and economic development. In order to avoid unacceptable congestion without expanding roads or building new ones, the City hopes to reduce the number of SOV trips under five kilometres, and encourage other forms of transportation such as walking or cycling. One person going work would only need to carpool, walk, cycle or take transit to work 20 days a year instead to achieve an 8 per cent reduction in SOV trips.

News Release Document -34Kb PDF
Posted: May 13, 2014

 
 

"New team leader for Bike to Work Week encourages other cyclists to join"

As Bike to Work Week (May 25 - June 1) approaches, City of Vernon has been supporting new team leaders who are taking part in the program that helps encourage alternate, more active methods of transportation. Kirbey Lockhart is one of the new team leaders and shared some of the reasons why he is participating in Bike to Work Week.

“It takes me about six to eight minutes to drive to work and 11 minutes to cycle with about 15 minutes to ride home," said Lockhart. "Pedaling allows me to unwind from the day’s tension."

Lockhart said he bikes to work in the morning from Middleton Mountain to get his “Zen moment” in Polson Park, as he pedals along the boardwalk through the park to his destination at RBC Dominion Securities. With rising fuel costs, Lockhart decided to buy a Canadian-made electric assist bicycle and plans to ride 100 days this year, an amazing goal. Lockhart is now challenging his co-workers to sign up and participate in Bike to Work Week.

News Release Document -35Kb PDF
Posted: May 7, 2014

 

"Friday Downtown Market Road Closures - May through September"

Every Friday from 3 - 8 pm, beginning May 9 until September 26, a portion of 30 Avenue will be closed to traffic for the Friday Downtown Vernon Association community markets.

  • 32 Street to 34 Street in May (2 blocks)
  • 30 Street to 34 Street from June to August (4 blocks)
  • 30 Street to 32 Street in September (2 blocks) Streets will be left open to north south traffic.

News Release Document -53Kb PDF
Posted: May 7, 2014

 

"City of Vernon, VFRS and Predator Ridge break ground on new fire hall"

Today, the City of Vernon, Vernon Fire Rescue Services (VFRS) and Predator Ridge Golf Resort kicked off the construction of the new Predator Ridge fire hall, expected to be completed this year. The City of Vernon approved $60,000 for the design of a two-bay fire station to be located at Predator Ridge Golf Resort on January 12, 2011. Once the conceptual design was completed, $600,000 was approved by Council for the construction of the fire station.

The City of Vernon and Predator Ridge began negotiations of a land lease that was given approval by both parties for a term of 999 years. The station is expected to be completed by the end of October, 2014.

The design of the station was completed in 2013 with significant input from the Predator Ridge Construction Division, who envision the station architecture complementing the current neighbourhood design guidelines. VFRS currently has 34 career staff and 40 paid-per-call firefighters. Station 2 (Okanagan Landing) and the new Predator Ridge Fire Hall (Station 3) will be operated by paid-per-call firefighters. VFRS responds to approximately 3,000 emergency calls per year.

News Release Document -107Kb PDF
Posted: May 5, 2014

  Predator Fire Hall

"City of Vernon addresses accessibility concerns"

The City of Vernon is making it easier to address accessibility concerns identified by the public. The City recently completed a review of its Committees of Council and are making several changes, including adding two representatives of accessibility issues to both its Advisory Planning Committee and the new Transportation Committee. This is intended to ensure that the City is receiving this perspective, input and expertise on all the development applications, policy development and transportation issues considered by the two committees.

In addition, the public is able to speak with staff about accessibility concerns they may have with City buildings, streets, sidewalks and other public infrastructure. Staff will follow up on concerns, advise members of the public of any regulations or bylaws that may be applicable or whether the issue should be brought to Council’s attention, and track the issues received and the manner of their disposition.

Previously, the City had an Accessibility Advisory Committee, which was eliminated in the Committee review process. That group focused on identified problems and potential programs, but did not have an opportunity to be involved with development and transportation. The new approach addresses that, and provides a process to address identified concerns.

Staff will monitor this new process and provide a report to Council at a future date, to include the number of concerns raised and their disposition and an assessment of the process. It is anticipated that this report will be provided in late 2014.
If you have concerns regarding the accessibility of public buildings or places, call 250-550-3634 or email csbreception@vernon.ca.

News Release Document -55Kb PDF
Posted: May 5, 2014


"Public consultation session scheduled for 25 Street traffic management proposal"

Residents of 25 St from Pleasant Valley Road to 46 Ave and connecting roads are invited to attend a public consultation session in the Arbour Room of the Alliance Church (2601 – 43 Ave) on Wednesday, May 14, from 6 to 8 pm. The focus of this session is to address concerns raised by residents in this area about inappropriate traffic usage of 25 St.
Proposed changes to intersection along 25 St were designed by City staff to meet resident requests while achieving the best balance between cost and results. To view a map of the proposed intersections please visit the projects section of www.vernon.ca/vernonmoves or call 250-550-3634.

News Release Document -32Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 25, 2014


"Public invited to Affordable Housing Forum on May 1"

The City of Vernon, Social Planning Council, the Land Trust and RDNO are hosting an affordable housing forum to provide information, ideas and networking opportunities for people interested in affordable and attainable housing. The forum takes place on Thursday, May 1, from 3 – 6:30 pm at the Schubert Community Centre.
“We want the community to be up to date on the programs and policies that exist to encourage attainable housing, but also discuss the challenges to reaching our housing goals,” said Juliette Cunningham, Chair of the City’s Affordable Housing Committee.
The forum will be broken into three main sessions and participants are welcome to choose which sessions to attend. Agenda items include BC Housing and CHMC provincial and federal programs, the RDNO quality-of-life survey, universal design guidelines for aging in place, and an overview of a local housing-needs assessment. The final session will be an interactive workshop to review current municipal policies on attainable housing that will provide participants a chance to give feedback to the City.
“Everyone is welcome but we think that realtors, private developers, and housing non–profits will be particularly interested,” said Annette Sharkey from the Social Planning Council.
For more information or to pre-register for the event, contact: info@socialplanning.ca

News Release Document -248Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 23, 2014


"City of Vernon recognizes 2014 Day of Mourning"

The City of Vernon will recognize and support the 2014 Day of Mourning on Monday, April 28, by flying the flags at City Hall at half-mast. Across Canada, April 28 is designated as the Day of Mourning, a time when workers, families, employers and others come together to remember those who have lost their lives to work-related incidents or occupational diseases. Every year, WorkSafeBC, the B.C. Federation of Labour, and the Business Council of British Columbia co-host a public ceremony to honour the occasion.

“The Day of Mourning is one day during the year where employers, workers and unions stand together in recognizing workers who have been injured or lost their lives on the job,” said Clay Fredin, Health & Safety Coordinator for the City of Vernon. “There were 128 workers who lost their lives in 2013, which is 128 families who are now missing a loved one. This statistic doesn’t take into account the numbers of families struggling daily to care for an injured loved one. The Day of Mourning is an essential reminder to everyone how important workplace health and safety is on a daily basis throughout the year, ensuring workers go home safely to their families each day.”

“This is an opportunity for all of us in the community to share in our sadness over such events and to hope they continue to become less common over time,” said Mayor Rob Sawatzky.

The Canadian Labour Congress first recognized the Day of Mourning in 1984. In 1990, this day became a national observance with the passing of the Workers Mourning Day Act, and on April 28, 1991, the federal government officially proclaimed the national Day of Mourning.

News Release Document - 33Kb PDF
l Posted: Apr 23, 2014


"Open House for Patrick Nicol memorial ideas"

Public invited to open house for Patrick Nicol memorial ideas

The City of Vernon asked for suggestions from the community on a way to remember and honour Councillor Patrick Nicol—and the community has spoken. Following a survey that invited feedback from the public on the best way to memorialize Nicol, an open house to discuss those ideas is being held at City Hall on April 29 from 5 – 7 pm.

Since Nicol passed away in January, the City has received countless stories of his kindness, generosity, the love of this country, and his unwavering commitment to making Vernon a better place for everyone. Councillor Juliette Cunningham is a member of the committee that was established after Vernon residents and business people asked the City to memorialize Nicol in some manner.

"We have received some great responses for our request for ideas to honor the late Councillor Patrick Nicol,” said Cunningham, who sat next to Nicol in Council for many years. “This will be an opportunity to explore a final concept which is being proposed."

In remembering Councillor Nicol, the committee asked for suggestions that reflected Nicol’s values, could be accessed by the entire community and that built on existing infrastructure. There were many recurring themes in the survey’s responses, and Cunningham hopes for a strong showing at the open house to discuss the best ways to move these ideas forward.

News Release Document - 33Kb PDF
l Posted: Apr 23, 2014


"Annual traffic signal washing maintenance"

Beginning Monday, May 5, and lasting until Friday, June 27, traffic signal technicians will begin annual signal washing maintenance from 7:30 am to 4 pm. During this time, all intersections within Vernon, except for those on Highway 97 and Highway 6, will be occupied by the signal technicians for short durations to clean signal LEDs. The City of Vernon thanks the public for being patient, slowing down and using care when approaching an intersection occupied by City technicians.

News Release Document - 31Kb PDF
l Posted: Apr 23, 2014


"Gear up for 2014 Bike to School and Work Week"

The City of Vernon and the Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO) are encouraging North Okanagan residents to ride their bikes in support of the 2014 Bike to School and Work Week from May 25 to June 1. To promote the event, the City is inviting new and returning team leaders to a free information workshop on Wednesday, April 30, from 4:45 to 6:45 pm at Vernon City Hall Council Chambers. Team leaders will be provided with a number of resources, including support to register their teams on the new provincial Bike-to-Work website. The updated site includes new features that allow cyclists to plan routes online, calculate their total distance and calories burned, as well as the reduction in greenhouse gases (GHGs) from riding rather than driving to work. Along with a t-shirt and promotional package, team leaders will also be provided dinner by event sponsors, Domino’s Pizza. In 2013, more than 35 communities around B.C. participated in this event.

In the North Okanagan, 56 teams comprised of 401 riders rode a total of 12,894 kilometres, which equaled 2,991 kilograms of CO2 offsets.

To preregister for this workshop or for more information on Bike to School and Work Week, please call 250.550.3634 or visit www.vernon.ca/vernonmoves.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 15, 2014

  Bike to Work Week

"Pleasant Valley Road construction to begin April 21"

Beginning the week of April 21 and continuing into the fall of 2014, Pleasant Valley Road construction from 41 Ave to 48 Ave will commence, including road reconstruction, new water main, replacement of storm and sanitary sewer piping, and new sidewalk. Work will progress in two phases: Phase I on 41 Avenue to 16 Street is planned to start on Monday, April 21, and will take approximately 12 weeks to complete; Phase II, from 16 St to 48 Ave, will last approximately eight weeks. The active construction area on Pleasant Valley Road will be closed to through-traffic but open to local residents and business traffic. Detours will be in effect for the duration of construction.

The contractor for the Pleasant Valley Road project is R355 Enterprise Ltd, the engineer is Monaghan Engineering and City of Vernon contact is Greg Thompson. For more information regarding this project please contact Monahan Engineering at 250-503-1023 or visit http://www.vernon.ca/index.php/projects/pleasant-valley-road-reconstruction.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 15, 2014

 

"City of Vernon seeks public input for Parks Master Plan"

The City of Vernon is developing a Park Master Plan following the shift of management of local parks from RDNO to the City on January 1 of this year. They are asking for the public’s input in order to develop a Parks vision to manage the local parks and outdoor recreation system responsibly in Vernon.

The parks and outdoor recreation survey measuring community satisfaction and priorities is the first opportunity for many to get involved. The survey is being mailed out in upcoming utility bills and is also available online. Residents will be able to share how satisfied they are with parks and outdoor recreation in the city, including what improvements or changes they would suggest.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 11, 2014


"City of Vernon streamlining internal committees of Council"

City of Vernon staff have been directed to complete a detailed review of all select and standing committees as part of the follow-up to the 2013 Core Services Review. The review, completed by KPMG, was an initiative of Council in as part of their mandate to make sound budget management a priority while protecting essential services for City residents. Council has asked staff for clarification of roles, opportunities for consolidation to reduce duplication or overlap, and possible elimination of identified committees of Council. Restructuring the City’s committees will involve folding some committees or initiatives into others. The restructuring process is expected to be completed by May 1, 2014.

“Our goal through the reorganization of Council's committee structure is to provide cost effective means of public and organization input to important policy decisions and direction for our community,” said Mayor Rob Sawatzky. “However, Council and myself have tremendous appreciation and gratitude for the volunteer work of those who have sat on these committees. We will continue to be grateful for the dedication of those who gave their time to make Vernon the great city it is.”

News Release Document - 48Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 10, 2014


"Collaborative efforts bring two high-profile events to Kal Tire Place"

When Kal Tire Place’s multifunctional facilities were in demand for two high-profile events-the 2014 Okanagan Military Tattoo and the 2014 BC Junior B Lacrosse Provincials-on the same August long weekend, there were concerns that one of the events would have to be bumped to another weekend or moved to another location. However, City of Vernon’s recreation services staff worked closely with organizers from both events to come up with a solution that will allow Vernon area residents the chance to enjoy two diverse events that showcase the facility’s versatility.

“The City of Vernon Recreation Services is very pleased to see that these groups have worked with our staff in order to allow two great events to take place in August,” said Doug Ross, Director of Recreation Services. “We’re excited to have events like the inaugural Okanagan Military Tattoo and the Jr. B Lacrosse Provincials taking place in our community.”

Military Tattoo performances have a 300-year history and originated with returning militias putting on a show for the home folks. They have now evolved into military and non-military groups and individuals, and from just marching into a multi-layered, multi-ethnic music, marching, singing and dancing events. The Okanagan Military Tattoo will take place Friday, August 1 and Saturday, August 2.

Norm Crerar, director of the Okanagan Military Tattoo 2014, expressed his appreciation of all parties working to come to a mutually beneficial arrangement for the facilities.

“This show, with 400 performers and needing 200 volunteers, will be the biggest show of its kind to come to Vernon,” said Crerar. “We expect this event to be an annual event and just as important to Vernon as Funtastic and the Winter Carnival”.

The Vernon Tigers Lacrosse Team is hosting the BC Junior B Lacrosse Provincials, which will take place Saturday through Monday, August 2-4.

News Release Document - 36Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 9, 2014

 

 

 


"Car dealer and lease operator partner with City to promote tourism in Vernon"

Watkin Motors and Marjak Leasing are supporting Tourism Vernon as the official vehicle sponsors for the organization, providing a 2014 Ford Escape - an appropriate name for a tourism vehicle-that allows visitor services to “go mobile”.

“Since we first went mobile by offering visitor services outside of our Visitor Centres in 2009, Watkin Motors and Marjak Leasing have supported us as our official vehicle sponsors,” said Michelle Jefferson, manager of Tourism Services. “During this five-year partnership, we have enjoyed three different vehicles that help Tourism Vernon respond to the changing needs for visitor services. The cars also act as moveable billboards in helping promote our services.”

The tourism vehicles are used to attend tradeshows, events and provide information at locations inside and outside of Vernon, helping to raise awareness of Vernon and our visitor services. They have also been used to provide tours to visiting media and dignitaries when they visit Vernon. The sponsorship of the vehicle also allows the department to manage overall costs.

“We are so grateful for the support of Watkin Motors and Marjak Leasing,” said Jefferson.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Apr 8, 2014

 

"Regional Paralympian medalists celebrated"

The City of Vernon and Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO) are encouraging area residents to come show their support and pride for the strong showing by three regional athletes-Sonja Gaudet and Josh Dueck of Vernon and Ina Forrest of Armstrong-in the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games. The Celebrate our North Okanagan Paralympians event takes place April 2 from 5 to 6:30 pm at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre and is open to the public.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 31, 2014


"Speed Watch Program in Effect April 2nd"

The Speed Watch Program will be in effect starting at 7:30 am April 2nd at a school zone near you. The program operates in support of ICBC and their Road Sense initiative. The program is directly coordinated by Vernon Safe Communities Unit and is operated by RCMP Citizens Patrol volunteers throughout the Vernon area.

The purpose of the Speed Watch program is to enhance road safety and educate drivers. This is done by increasing the level of awareness surrounding the issues of unsafe speed and distracted driving and reducing the incidents of speeding by reflecting drivers speed and reinforcing the speed limit in that zone. Our trained volunteers use digital speed reader boards and a radar unit and concentrate on areas where speeding is a major hazard. Volunteers will be initially concentrating on school zones in order to keep the motoring public aware of the change in speed now that students are back in class.

News Release Document - 122Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 27, 2014


"Vernon firefighter receives Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award"

Captain Chris Kulak from the Vernon Fire Rescue Services (VFRS), a recent recipient of the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award, was recognized in a regular meeting of Vernon City Council by Mayor Rob Sawatzky and Chief Keith Green on Monday afternoon.

“One of the great privileges of my position is that I get the honour of recognizing individuals within our City who make a difference to so many people in Vernon,” said Sawatzky. “Today, I am very pleased to recognize Chris Kulak.” Kulak has volunteered and raised funds for Cancer Society, Hospice House, Salvation Army, Muscular Dystrophy Canada, the International Association of Firefighters, and the BC Professional Firefighters Burn Fund. In 2013, approximately $24,000 was raised through Kulak’s efforts.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 24, 2014

 

"City of Vernon seeking community suggestions to remember Patrick Nicol"

The City of Vernon is seeking suggestions from the committee on a way to remember and honour Councillor Patrick Nicol. Since Nicol passed away in January, the City has received countless stories of his kindness, generosity, love of this city and its people, and his unwavering commitment to making Vernon a better place for everyone. Councillor Juliette Cunningham is heading a committee that has opened the question of the best way to memorialize Nicol to the people of Vernon.

Cunningham sat next to Nicol in Council sessions, and fondly remembers him as a man of the people.

“He was absolutely dedicated to the individual citizen and their right to be heard and informed,” she said.

In remembering Councillor Nicol, the committee is seeking suggestions that:

• Reflect Councillor Nicol’s values;
• Can be accessed by the entire community; and
• Build on existing City infrastructure.

The City has set up an online survey to collect responses from the public. The deadline for submissions is April 11, 2014. Once all of the suggestions have been collected, an open house will be held in late April to discuss the submissions, at which point the public will be given a second opportunity to vote on selections to be brought forward.
The survey can be found at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NVVJKPG.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 21, 2014


"Large community attendance at City workshop provides best routes input"

City of Vernon staff were very pleased with the turnout on March 12 at East Hill Community Church, where 47 attendees responded to an invitation to review and provide input for a Vernon “Best Routes” cycling and walking trail map. The feedback was positive, and participants were pleased to support the City’s promotion of walking and cycling within Vernon.

“The comments from this workshop will be included in the Pedestrian and Cycling Master Plan, which is part of the revised Transportation Plan and Official Community Plan (OCP),” said Wendy Majewski, the coordinator of Transportation Demand Management. “Everyone was very positive and wanted to thank Mayor and Council for the ongoing efforts to promote walking and cycling. It was noticeable that participants appreciated that additional infrastructure—although desirable to make certain routes complete and fully connected-needs to be constructed in a prioritized manner and within available budgets.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 19, 2014


CrashReel

"The Crash Reel” presented by BrainTrust Canada, City of Vernon and BMO"

BrainTrust Canada, in partnership with City of Vernon and BMO, is presenting a one-time-only viewing of the documentary The Crash Reel, the story of U.S. snowboarder Kevin Pearce who sustained traumatic brain injury just weeks prior to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The presentation, which brings awareness to the serious issue of brain injury through Kevin’s story, takes place on March 25 at 7 pm at the Vernon Alliance Church in the Sanctuary, with tickets $10 and available at BMO in Vernon, smartticket.ca or at the door. The event offers festival seating and doors are open at 6 pm.

News Release Document - 33Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 13, 2014


"City updates parking meters to accept quarters, loonies and toonies."

The City of Vernon has recently replaced City parking meter mechanisms that allow the meters to accept all Canadian quarters, $1 and $2 coins. Previously, approximately 200 parking meters were not able to be modified to accept the new $1, and $2 coins minted after 2012. While the meters were marked to indicate this problem, the City recognized that this was confusing for many residents, and is committed to providing greater clarity and convenience when it comes to parking control in the downtown core and elsewhere in Vernon.

Metered parking, with a maximum time limit of 2 - 4 hours as indicated on the meter, is in effect 9 am to 6 pm, Monday to Saturday. The City’s current parking rate matches nearby cities such as Penticton and Kamloops; Kelowna recently adopted an hourly rate of $1.25. Time limitations are in effect to ensure that there is turnover of parking, and that spaces become available for new users. However, extended hourly or daily parking at reduced rates is available in the downtown Parkade, open Monday through Saturday, as well as at the City’s CSB parking lot. Free parking is available Saturdays and Sundays in the City’s CSB and 29 Avenue parking lots and the Parkade.

News Release Document - 33Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 13, 2014


"Vernon fire chief summarizes 2013 VFRS incidents and accomplishments"

Fire Chief Keith Green presented the Vernon Fire Rescue Services (VFRS) 2013 annual report to Council on Monday, March 10, 2014, and included several highlights of VFRS's significant accomplishments over the last year. Among these were unifying the firefighting force from Stations 1 and 2 into a single command structure, assuming management responsibility for the Regional Fire Training Centre, significant investment in training hours to ensure consistency within the new deployment model, and mitigation of several large-scale incidents. Furthermore, the efficacy of VFRS planning in deployment and training were proven by the department’s responses to fires at the recycling plant and landfill, as well as 37 structure fires, a large-scale hazardous material incident in downtown Vernon and the Capri Garden multi-unit apartment fires.

News Release Document - 79Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 12, 2014


"Vernon councillor calls for national dementia strategy"

VERNON, B.C.- Councillor Catherine Lord presented a motion in Council Chambers today in support of Bill C-356, and recommended that the City of Vernon join a call to all levels of government and the Federation of Municipalities to adopt a national dementia strategy in response to national figures on the impacts of Alzheimer’s disease. Included in the motion was a call to action for citizens within Canadian communities to become more aware and engaged about the far-reaching effects of Alzheimer’s and other dementias.

Alzheimer's disease and other dementias take a tremendous toll on hundreds of thousands of families and caregivers, and an estimated 3 million Canadians face challenges of providing care for those suffering.

News Release Document - 52Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 11, 2014


"We need to stop getting burned"

The first week of February each year is a time that the Fire Service across Canada has traditionally set aside to remind the general public that injuries caused by burns are a serious problem and, for the most part, entirely preventable. Unfortunately, burns remain a problem: the facts and numbers haven’t improved and people are still needlessly getting burned.

News Release Document - 81Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 10, 2014


"City of Vernon lifeguard supervisor recognized for saving lives"

Gary Lefebvre, the aquatic supervisor for City of Vernon Recreation Services, is being recognized by the Lifesaving Society of BC & Yukon on March 29 in Vancouver for his role in rescuing three canoeists on Kalamalka Lake last summer.

Lefebvre was playing volleyball with family on the beach of Kalamalka Lake in the evening of August 7, 2013, when he heard a faint call for help. He noticed that a trio of canoeists had capsized their vessel, so he and three Vancouver Island-based youth immediately reacted. Only one of the canoeists was wearing a personal flotation device, and none were strong swimmers. Although the canoeists were all brought safely to shore, Lefebvre said it was obvious that they were all frightened by the events, and without the intervention of Lefebvre and the three youth, the outcome might have been much worse.

News Release Document - 96Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 3, 2014


"2014 Burn permits for open burning now available"

Property owners can burn with a permit between February 28 and April 30 on properties two hectares (five acres) or over as long as they follow BC Regulation 145/93, which can be found at www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/34_145_93 and follow the regulations detailed in Bylaw 5263 on the City’s website at www.vernon.ca/images/uploads/council/bylaws/Fire_Prevention_Bylaw_5263.pdf.

News Release Document - 78Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 3, 2014


"City of Vernon explains proposed business license bylaw and fee structure"

The City of Vernon is currently reviewing its business license bylaw and fee structure and is looking for input on the proposed changes.

The City has already received a number of comments to date on the proposed changes. One common issue has been the calculation of floor area. It is important to note that these calculations are based on square metres and not feet.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: Mar 3, 2014


"Vernon Citizens Patrol Volunteers begin patrolling in March"

The Vernon Citizens Patrol (COP) Program, part of the City of Vernon’s Safe Communities Unit, has graduated 12 new volunteers who start patrolling the communities in Vernon starting March 1, 2014.

For over 21 years, the community-based volunteer group has helped to minimize the amount of crime occurring throughout Vernon. COP members assist the RCMP by acting as an extra set of eyes and ears while patrolling our city. Duties involve patrolling streets, business areas, parks and shopping center parking lots, and documenting suspicious activities and calling them into the RCMP. COP programs also include Speed Watch, Cell Watch and Lock-Out Auto Crime.

News Release Document - 103Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 26, 2014


"Mayor of Vernon sponsors party to celebrate hometown Olympians"

Vernon Mayor Rob Sawatzky is helping to celebrate Vernon’s Olympic spirit and hometown Olympians Kevin Hill (snowboard cross) and Justin Dorey (half pipe) from 3 – 6 pm on February 26, 2014 at Kal Tire Place. Sawatzky was approached by Kevin’s father, Don, and sister, Shanda, to be a sponsor of the event to welcome home Kevin, who finished 2nd in the small final of his event, placing eighth overall. (Dorey, who is unable to attend the celebration, finished 12th.) Sawatzky said he was honoured to lend his support to the occasion.

“We share the pride the community feels for the standards of Olympic sports excellence that Kevin and Justin have achieved,” said Sawatzky. “We are proud to help the community in honoring them for their dedication and for the joy their endeavors have given us.

” While many Vernonites gathered to watch the competitions as they were occurring, Shanda said it was important for Kevin to be able to personally thank the community that supported him so much.

“Kevin is a true ambassador for Vernon,” said Shanda. “He has traveled all over the world and yet he is passionately in love with Vernon and the Okanagan, and all who know him will attest to that.”

Other event sponsors include Real Canadian Superstore, Tim Horton’s, Save-On Foods, Rancho Vignola and Sure Copy. Anyone wishing to meet and congratulate Kevin, his family, and the family of Justin Dorey are welcome to attend.

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 20, 2014


"VFRS conduct confined space training"

On February 11 and 12, Vernon Fire Rescue Services (VFRS), along with participants from Greater Vernon Water, held a two-day course in confined-space rescue as part of their annual skills maintenance training at Duteau Creek Water Treatment Facility. The course involved two different confined-space rescue scenarios. Confined spaces are defined as containing or having the potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere, which may include safety or health hazards such as gaseous materials, unguarded machinery, exposed live wires heat stress.

News Release Document - 350Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 20, 2014


"Feedback asked for updated City business licensing"

Vernon business owners are being asked to review and provide feedback to the City’s proposed business license bylaw and fee structures that are being considered by Council in late March.

In September, 2013, Council directed staff to review the business license bylaw and fee structure. The existing bylaw has been in place with few revisions since 1985, and is inconsistent with current legislation, incompatible with the latest licensing software and inconsistent with future plans for on-line processes. Further, a committee comprised of City staff, a member of Council and a representative from the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce set a goal to develop regulations that were both transparent and easily understood. The proposed changes include a revised application process and fee structure as well as a shift toward fees being based on the size of the business premises.

Business owners are encouraged to review the proposed bylaw, fee schedule and other explanatory materials by visiting www.vernon.ca/services/bylaw_enforcement/ doc/PP_Business_Licence_Bylaw_Review_Presentation.pdf. Comments can be directed to Council’s attention before March 14, 2014, via email (tmuska@vernon.ca) or by mailing Business Licensing, 3001 32 Avenue, Vernon, B.C., V1T 2L8.

News Release Document - 59Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 17, 2014


"City of Vernon Council supports initial proposal for Celebrity Sports Invitational"

Tourism Vernon, with the support Mayor and Council of the City of Vernon, will provide $50,000 to support the organizational requirements of the 2014 Celebrity Sports Invitational in September of this year. Tourism Vernon was asked to be the initial local supporter for a proposal to secure the event.

Celebrity Sports Invitational is a made-for-TV event that partners with Robert Kennedy Jr.’s Waterkeeper Alliance, an organization that raises funds for the protection of rivers, lakes, bays and streams on six continents. The four-day event has taken place in other notable locations including Banff and Lake Louise in Alberta, as well as Jamaica and the Dominican Republic. These events have previously been attended by high-profile celebrities such as Alec Baldwin, Catherine Zeta Jones, Michael Douglas, Pierce Brosnan, Glenn Close and Robin Williams. The event is filmed for a one-hour syndicated show for network television in North America (180 stations including ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox TV) as well as a one-hour special on Fox Sports Net. Canadian media outlets also attend the event for features on Entertainment Tonight, Canada AM, E Canada and The Insider.

News Release Document - 33Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 13, 2014


"Media Are Invited To Project Save-A-Life"

Media are invited to attend Silver Star Rotary “Project Save-A-Life” Mass CPR Training in conjunction with Vernon Fire Rescue Services.
Date: Saturday, February 15, 2014
Address: Clarence Fulton Secondary School (Front Entrance)
2301 Fulton Road, Vernon

News Release Document - 75Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 13, 2014


"City of Vernon commitment to health and safety recognized by WorkSafeBC"

The City of Vernon’s commitment to safety is being acknowledged by the WorkSafeBC (WSBC) Certificate of Recognition (COR) program in conjunction with their certifying partner the BC Municipal Safety Association and will result in the City receiving up to $50,000 in annual incentive payments for three years to support the further improvement of worker health and safety practices within the City.

“This is a great achievement for the City, considering it is one of only 31 local governments and naturally aligned organizations to achieve COR across British Columbia,” said City of Vernon Health and Safety Coordinator Clay Fredin. “It highlights the level of commitment and continuous improvement towards health and safety in the work place that City employees demonstrate at all levels throughout the organization.”

News Release Document - 34Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 11, 2014


"City of Vernon Director of Financial Services receives Canadian Award for Financial Reporting"

Today during a regular open meeting in Council Chambers, Kevin Bertles, the Director of Financial Services for the City, received a Canadian Award for Financial Reporting Achievement from Mayor Rob Sawatzky on behalf of the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA). Bertles was given the honour as the individual designated as primarily responsible for preparing an award-winning financial report—the Canadian Award for Financial Reporting—that The City of Vernon received for its annual financial report for the 2012 fiscal year. This is the fourth year in a row the City has been received the distinction.

News Release Document - 106Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 11, 2014


"Vernon ambassadors sought for 2014 Sister City Tour to Europe"

The City of Vernon Sister Cities Committee is inviting members of the public interested in becoming Vernon ambassadors to join a 14-day adventure to Europe leaving on September 19, 2014.

Visits will be made to Vernon’s sister cities Tavullia, Italy, and Frankenburg, Austria, with a special stop at the Swarovski Crystal Factory in Innsbruck, Austria. Other stops include Vienna, Venice, Florence and Rome and will feature a gondola ride with dinner, theatre shows, visits to museums and galleries, a visit to Vatican City and much more. The tour also includes 20 meals, step-on city guides, a bilingual tour escort, centrally located hotels and service of a coach and driver.

Those interested should contact Georgia Atwood at Carlson Wagonlit Travel 250-558-1010 for a detailed schedule and further information.

Photos: Swarovski Crystal Factor in Innsbruck – Edgar Marscopp photo Frankenberg landscape photos Courtesy Gunther Zierler

News Release Document - 32Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 6, 2014


"Signage changed around schools and playgrounds in Vernon"

VERNON, B.C. - The City of Vernon and the RCMP are asking drivers to pay close attention to the signs in and around local schools and playgrounds within the city, as signs around schools such as BX Elementary and Ellison have recently changed. There is a new process in place, following national standards, to determine which roads around schools and playgrounds do and do not have posted 30-kilometre speed limits. Using this new process, the City will review signs around all schools and playgrounds over the next two years.

News Release Document - 46Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 6, 2014


"Vernon residents and elected officials gather to remember city councillor"

Memorial services for City of Vernon Councillor Patrick Nicol were held today at Trinity United Church, with satellite services at Kal Tire Place and The Schubert Centre. Nicol passed away on January 15 after a long battle with cancer. Approximately 1,000 people attended the services across the city. There were many regional officials in attendance, including Vernon-Monashee MLA Eric Foster, Coldstream Mayor Jim Garlick, Armstrong Mayor Chris Pieper, Enderby Mayor Cyr Howie, Lumby Mayor Kevin Acton, Spallumcheen Mayor Janic Brown, Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO) Chair Rick Fairbairn and RDNO CAO Trafford Hall, as well as Vernon city councillors Juliette Cunningham, Brian Quiring and Catherine Lord.

News Release Document - 35Kb PDF
Posted: Feb 3, 2014


"City prepares for Councillor’s memorial services"

The City of Vernon is working with the family of Councillor Patrick Nicol and Trinity United Church for the memorial service that is to take place at 2 pm on Monday, February 3rd. In order to accommodate additional public parking, the right-hand driving lanes on Alexis Park Drive between 30th Avenue and 39th Avenue will be closed to use on Monday between 1 pm and 4:30 pm.

The City is requesting the public’s co-operation in reducing congestion and increasing safety by avoiding the Alexis Park Drive area during this time period. Bylaw officers along with Community Policing volunteers and staff will be on hand to direct traffic.

Because of the limited parking spaces at Trinity United Church, street parking will be accommodated and drop-off areas will be provided at the church. There is limited seating at the church, so a live video feed of the service will also be held at Kal Tire Place and The Schubert Centre.

News Release Document - 32 Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 30, 2014


"City supports governance model study for Greater Vernon"

Today, during the Regular Open Meeting for the City of Vernon, Mayor and Council resolved to support the recommendation of the Greater Vernon Governance Society in asking the Province to undertake a restructure study for Greater Vernon. Council moved to support a request to the Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development to commence a fact-finding study to determine the most efficient and cost-effective governance model, including the current model, specific to the Greater Vernon Area. Additionally, it was moved that that the Mayor write to the District of Coldstream and the Directors of Electoral Areas B and C to encourage supporting the request to the Ministry in order to have a thorough and independent analysis of governance models and costs.

News Release Document - 161Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 29, 2014


1"Memorial services planned for Councillor Patrick Nicol"

Memorial services for City of Vernon Councillor Patrick Nicol will take place on from 2:00 – 3:30 on Monday, February 3, 2014, at Trinity United Church in Vernon, B.C. Because of the expectation that a large number of residents will wish to pay their respects to Nicol and his family--and because the church can only seat 900 people—the City is also looking at the possibility of providing satellite locations with a live video feed of the services.

The City hopes to confirm these locations early next week. Nicol was first elected as councillor in 1985 and was well known for his dedication to the citizens of Vernon and his passion for bringing their voices forward to Council. He passed away on January 15 after a long battle with cancer.

“It is an honor to represent Vernon citizens,” Nicol had written for his bio on the City's website. “Equally, it has been a team effort because the best ideas frequently are produced by the citizens I represent.”

News Release Document - 97Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 23, 2014


1"2014 Budget approved by Council"

The 2014 Financial Plan presented to the Mayor and Council of the City of Vernon was approved today after three days of presentations by all City departments. The final budget has an overall increase of 3.1 per cent, which is inclusive of a 1.9 per cent capital expenditures increase as well as a 1.2 per cent increase for operating expenses and service changes, below Council’s budget goals of a maximum increase of 1.8 per cent.

News Release Document - 151Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 20, 2014


1"City of Vernon Councillor Nicol remembered by colleagues"

Mayor and Council for the City of Vernon remembered their colleague, Patrick Nicol, who passed away on Wednesday evening at age 64 after a long battle with cancer. In the final session of the City’s budget presentations on Friday morning, Nicol’s customary seat was empty but marked with two single roses, one red and one white, as a poignant reminder of the dignified man who was first elected as councillor in 1985.The session opened with a minute of silence to observe Nicol's long years of service and friendship.

News Release Document - 37Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 17, 2014


1"City saddened by Councillor’s death"

It is with great sadness that Mayor Robert Sawatzky, City Council colleagues and staff at the City of Vernon recognize the passing of councillor Patrick Nicol.
His length of service on Council was amongst the longest of any Councillor in our province. His dedication to his community was a foundation of his life and work. We will all greatly miss his wisdom and kindness, as well as his efforts to make his community a better place. He acted with dignity and respect for others and we, the members of his family at the City of Vernon, extend our condolences to his family and friends.

News Release Document - 49Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 16, 2014


1"Vernon City Council budget review ahead of schedule, on target for financial goals"

City of Vernon 2014 Financial Plan presentations concluded ahead of schedule in Council Chambers on Wednesday. Operating budgets for the City’s Fire Rescue Services, RCMP, Operation Services, Recreation Services, Community Development, Engineering and GIS, Human Resources, Corporate Services, Finance and Administration were all delivered and accepted by Council, with capital and change requests to be reviewed following the public input session at 11 am on Thursday, January 16.

News Release Document - 148Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 16, 2014


1"Recruiting Begins for February Intake of Vernon Citizens Patrol Candidates"

The RCMP Citizens Patrol (COP) program is recruiting now to train new volunteer candidates in the classroom February 18 to 20, 2014, in Vernon. For more than 20 years, this community-based volunteer group has helped to minimize the amount of crime occurring throughout Vernon. COP volunteers are extra eyes and ears for the Vernon/North Okanagan RCMP. The program provides a valuable crime prevention service to our community.

News Release Document - 292Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 13, 2014


1"Recreation Services, RCMP and Bylaw Officers take action on teen dance"

City of Vernon By-law officers and RCMP attended the Vernon Recreation Centre late in the evening on Saturday, January 11, 2014, because of reports of intoxicated youth at an event run by a third-party company based in Toronto. The agreement between the organizers and Recreation Services stipulated that the event, scheduled to run from 9 pm until 12 am, would be a high school student, alcohol-free dance.

News Release Document - 88Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 13, 2014


1"Vernon City Council to review 2014 budget, public input invited"

VERNON, B.C. - The proposed 2014-2018 Financial Plan for the City of Vernon will be on the agenda for three special regular council meetings: Wednesday, January 15 at 9 am, Thursday, January 16 at 11 am, and Friday, January 17 at 9 am. The meetings will be held in Council Chambers at City Hall, with opportunity for public input at 11 am each day. The goal for the plan is to meet Council’s commitment to “looking after our house,” and offers a roadmap for providing professional, efficient and economical services to the citizens of Vernon while recognizing budgetary realities.

News Release Document - 153Kb PDF
Posted: Jan 9, 2014



RDNO Greater Vernon Water Coldstream City of Vernon, BC City of Vernon, BC