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2015 Regional District Initiatives Featured 

The Regional District of Central Okanagan programming and service game plan for 2015 is outlined in the new edition of the Annual Review.

Among the initiatives planned for 2015:

  • Construction of a new Mission Creek intake for the Falcon Ridge water system and a new outfall from the Westside Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant.
  • Review several programs including the RDCO Fire Service, Victims Services, Crime Stoppers and Crime Prevention programs and report the findings for Regional Board consideration.
  • Conduct reviews of and updates to the Zoning bylaw, Rural Westside Official Community Plan and environmental inventories and mapping.
  • Engage the public and stakeholders to help create management plans for two Regional Parks:  Woodhaven Nature Conservancy and Black Mountain/ Sntsk‘il’ntən (sinch-SKILL-IN-tin).

“Our 43-page colour publication is an excellent overview of all the activities, programs and services provided across the Central Okanagan” says Bruce Smith, RDCO Communications Officer.  “It explains what the Regional District is all about.  We are the local government for residents in the Central Okanagan East and West Electoral Areas and a service provider to the municipalities of Kelowna, Lake Country, Peachland and West Kelowna for programs such as dog control, recycling, false alarm reduction and 9-1-1.”

The 2014 Annual Review also highlights many of the programs and services that were provided in the Central Okanagan during the last year.

It’s available online at regionaldistrict.com or printed copies may be picked up at the Regional District office at 1450 KLO Road in Kelowna.

(January 26, 2015)

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New Winter-Spring Regional Parks Guide Available 

The new Winter-Spring ‘Guide to Regional Parks 2015’ is now online and hot off the press.  You can link to it at regionaldistrict.com/parksguide, or pick a printed copy up at the EECO in Mission Creek Regional Park and over the next few weeks at any local government office or visitor information centre. 

Communications Officer Bruce Smith says, “The eight-page colour foldout has all the information you need about our exciting line up of programs and events in our Regional Parks over the first half of the year.”

He adds, “We’re not wasting any time getting underway for 2015.  We encourage people to pre-register for two free programs that are designed to get you and your family outside and active during the winter months.” 

The first is ‘Explore Your Parks’ which takes place once a month on a Saturday morning at 10:00 during January, February and March.  Join one of our Park Interpreters as we explore a different Regional Park by foot, bike, poles or snowshoes.  Please contact the staff at the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan for specific information about park locations, dates and activities and to register.

The second winter program is ‘Families in Parks’ and the first outing ‘Frosty Fun’ goes in Mission Creek Regional Park, Springfield and Durnin Roads on Saturday, January 25th between 10:00 and 11:30 am. To register your family, for this free event or other ‘Families in Parks’ events, please drop in to the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan, email eeco@cord.bc.ca or phone 250-469-6139.

There’s also a new drop-in program for families at the EECO in Mission Creek Regional Park each Saturday morning at 11.  It’s called ‘Eco-Art at the EECO’ and encourages you to explore your imagination and creativity.  You’ll create works of art with recycled and natural materials. Smith says “There’s no need to pre-register for this free program, just drop into the EECO a few minutes early.   All ages are welcome to take part!”

Smith says, “The winter-spring guide also has details about the spring ‘Tracks Walking Club’ program and our ‘Nature Detectives Spring-Break Camps’ in March for youngsters age five to seven.  Pre-registration is required for each of these popular programs.”

And of course, the Parks Guide also features a two-page colour map showing each RegionalPark location and some of the amenities that are available.

For more information about any Regional Parks program and our detailed online section for Regional Parks, visit regionaldistrict.com/parks or call the EECO at 250-469-6140.

(January 8, 2015)

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 Almost 20,000 Dog License Renewal Notices in the Mail

With a new year underway, it’s time for dog owners in the Central Okanagan to renew their pet’s license for 2015.

And it’s easier than ever before to keep your dog legal! Communications Officer Bruce Smith says, “We’ve revamped our online dog license renewal process. It’s simpler and easier for owners to pay for their 2015 dog license online at www.regionaldistrict.com. Last year, thousands of dog owners used the convenient online payment option, saving them from having to come in person to renew. Look for your account number and access code on your renewal notice, log in and complete the safe and secure payment transaction.”

Smith adds, “Dog owners renewing either online or in person have until February 28th to get their license for 2015. Starting March 1st, all renewals will be subject to an additional $20 late charge and could be subject to a fine for not having a valid license.”

For dog owners that haven’t yet purchased a license, they too can go online to make their dog legal for 2015. Smith says, “Just go online, set up an account, complete the license application form and pay for it. The new license tag will be mailed to them.”

All dog owners in the Central Okanagan are reminded that if they’re caught without a current license, they will be subject to a fine of $300 under the Responsible Dog Ownership Bylaw. That’s in addition to any fees that may be outstanding for having their dog cared for in the pound.

The cost of a license can be as low as five cents a day. The annual fee for a spayed or neutered dog is $20 while a license for those dogs that haven’t been fixed costs $60.

Smith adds “There are many benefits for licensing your dog. As an added incentive licensed dog owners receive a My Dog Matters Responsible Dog Owners rewards card that can be used for discounts and special services at more than 40 local businesses listed on the mydogmatters.ca program website. And dogs with a current license get a one-time, free ticket home, should they end up at the Regional Dog Pound on Weddell Place in Kelowna’s north end.”

Smith reminds dog owners that if their pet unfortunately gets away they should contact the Regional Dog Pound as quickly as possible. Our bylaw only requires the pound to hold a dog at the pound for up to 72 hours.

Licenses may be renewed or purchased at the Regional District office (1450 KLO Road), at the Regional Dog Pound (860 Weddell Place), each municipal government office and at the Kelowna branch of the SPCA (3785 Casorso Road). North Westside Road dog owners may also renew or purchase a license when staff is available at the main firehall (514 Udell Road) in Killiney Beach.

There’s plenty of information available about dog licensing and Responsible Dog Ownership in the Central Okanagan. Check out regionaldistrict.com/dogs for information about the Regional Dog service and what to do if you lose or find a dog. 

(January 5, 2015)

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Free Christmas Tree Drop Off

Your Christmas tree may be looking lush and lovely at the moment, but when the New Year comes say goodbye the sensible way and send your tree for chipping.

Waste Reduction Facilitator Rae Stewart says ”By dropping your tree off at any one of the convenient no charge Chip It locations, your tree will be chipped and composted into GlenGrow. This nutrient-rich soil conditioner is perfect for top dressing your lawn, landscaping, mixing in your vegetable garden, or using as potting soil. It’s available at the Glenmore landfill and many landscape supply centers come spring.”

Alternately, you can cut your tree into smaller pieces and place it in your yard waste cart for pickup when yard waste collection resumes in March- or drop it off for free at either the Glenmore landfill or Westside Residential Waste Disposal Center.

Free Christmas tree drop-off locations December 26th through January 31st are:

Kelowna and Area:

  • At the corner of Richter and Rowcliffe
  • Glenmore Landfill (Glenmore Road)  Open Monday-Sunday 7:30 am – 4:45 pm.  Closed Dec 25th, 26th and Jan 1st

Westside:

  • Westside Residential Waste Disposal and Recycling Center (Asquith Road)  Open Friday-Monday 7:30 am – 3:50 pm 

Lake Country:

  • Jack Seaton Park (1950 Camp Road)

Peachland

  • Compost Site (Princeton Road) Open Monday-Sunday 7 am – 3:30 pm

Note:  Before dropping your tree off for recycling, please remove all decorations and tinsel, and any  plastic bags or other materials used for transporting the tree.

For more information, visit regionaldistrict.com/recycle or call the Regional Waste Reduction Office at 250-469-6250.

(December 15, 2014)

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Clean Air and Comfort For Your Home - Replace your old wood burning stove and save!

Here’s a chance for you to upgrade your old wood burning appliance to a cleaner burning unit and save some money! 

While funds last the Regional Air Quality program’s Wood Stove Exchange is offering rebates of $250 when customers purchase a new, cleaner burning EPA/CSA certified woodstove, and recycle their old, polluting wood burning appliance. Participating Central Okanagan retailers will take care of recycling your old stove and provide all the necessary paperwork for the rebates.  View Program Poster

In addition to the $250 rebate, during March and April participating retailers may offer an additional rebate of $150 or more off the suggested retail price of new wood burning appliances. Some retailers may extend the additional rebates for the entire year, so be sure to check with your local retailer for more information.  For those wanting to exchange their old wood burning stove or insert for a gas appliance, Fortis BC is offering an additional $300 rebate for eligible EnerChoice gas fireplaces.

Since 2001, more than 650 Central Okanagan homeowners have taken advantage of the rebate program and exchanged their old stoves for cleaner burning models. Smoke from wood burning produces particulate matter, one of the main pollutants that leads to poor air quality and can have serious health impacts. It’s estimated over 12,000 valley homes are still equipped with inefficient conventional wood stoves or masonry fireplaces, adding a lot of smoke pollution.

Regional Air Quality Program Coordinator Nancy Mora Castro says, “Smoke from inefficient wood fireplaces and stoves contributes to poor air quality throughout the Central Okanagan.  By replacing old wood burning appliances with newer, cleaner-burning certified technology homeowners can use up to one-third less wood and reduce smoke by up to 90%.  That will help us all breathe a little easier.”

To take part in the program, visit one of the participating retailers in the Regional District of Central Okanagan, or contact the Regional Air Quality Program for more information. A list of participating retailers can be found at regionaldistrict.com/airquality.

(November 26, 2014)

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Open Burning Season Begins in the Central Okanagan

In light of the current weather conditions, open burning season in the Central Okanagan will begin on October 1st.  

Under Regional District and local fire bylaws, permitted open burning may start October 1st and must be complete by April 30th.  Fire chiefs may change the dates depending on the fire hazard in their area. 

Starting Wednesday, October 1st, those people with properties greater than one hectare will be allowed to burn outdoors, but only after receiving a permit from their local fire authority and only after confirming that burning is allowed on a particular day.  Farmers and large lot owners must also follow any regulations before lighting any fire. 

Eligible property owners within the Central Okanagan East or the Central Okanagan West electoral areas may obtain a permit by calling the Regional District at 250-469-6223 (Long Distance Collect Calls are accepted) weekdays only between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm, excluding holidays. All other eligible property owners must obtain a permit from their municipal fire department.

Before lighting any fire, eligible property owners with a valid permit must call the toll-free Outdoor Burning Hotline:  1-855-262-2876 (BURN).   It will tell them if open burning is allowed on a particular day.  Both the Venting and Air Quality conditions must be good in order for burning to occur within Central Okanagan fire jurisdictions.  This information is also available each day after 7:15 am at regionaldistrict.com/airquality.

Under the Regional District Smoke Control Bylaw, creating nuisance smoke from open burning is not allowed in the City of Kelowna, the District of Lake Country, District of West Kelowna and the Central Okanagan East and West Electoral Areas or under the bylaws of the District of Peachland. 

Violators could receive a fine or be charged with the cost of putting out the fire.  Residents are encouraged to report anyone illegally burning on a non-burning day by calling the Regional Fire Dispatch Center at 250-469-8577.

All Central Okanagan property owners regardless of property size are encouraged to take advantage of other options to dispose of their yard waste.   The bi-weekly curbside yard waste collection program is underway through the end of November and residents are reminded to only place leaves, grass, pine needles and small prunings inside their wheeled yard waste cart with the green lid closed.  Residents may also choose to use the year-round free yard waste program at either the Glenmore landfill (Open seven days a week 7:30 am to 4:45 pm) or at the Westside Residential Waste Disposal Centre (Open 7:30 am to 4:00 pm Friday through Monday).  Yard waste and pruning’s weighing up to 250 kilograms (550 pounds) and 20 centimeters or less in diameter may be dropped off for free at either location.  When transporting loads for disposal, please make sure they are covered.  As long as yard waste is separated from regular garbage, loads exceeding the maximum weight up to 20 centimeters in diameter will be charged $40.00 per tonne while those with a larger diameter will be charged $65 a tonne.  As well, a number of private companies offer wood chipping and grinding services or rent portable chippers.  Some may also pick up yard waste for disposal.

Most of the burning permits that are issued in the Central Okanagan are for agricultural burning, which is allowed under Provincial Right to Farm legislation.   However, before starting any fire farmers must also call 1-855-262-2876 (BURN) or visit regionaldistrict.com/airquality to ensure burning is allowed.  The Regional Air Quality Program is working with farmers to encourage the use of the Agricultural Chipping Program as an alternate disposal method.   In addition, the program offers a Best Management Practices handbook and DVD to help farmers.

Central Okanagan residents are reminded to check with their local fire jurisdiction regarding regulations and restrictions regarding campfires, chimineas and other outdoor wood fire burning devices.

(September 29, 2014)

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Document Download Problems? 

Recently the Regional District has become aware of periodic problems regarding the inability of some users of our website to open Adobe PDF documents that had been previously accessible.  They've received an error notice saying that the document they were trying to open is not available. 

We understand that the problem has been caused by a recent Microsoft Internet Explorer Security update.  This update on the user's computer has broken the ability of the Adobe Acrobat Reader program to open and access previously downloadable PDF documents in Internet Explorer. 

Should this problem occur on your computer system, please download and install the latest free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.  You can find this by following this link:  http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html or by clicking on the Adobe Reader icon on the bottom right corner on each page of our website. 

We thank you for your patience and appreciate your continued support of the Regional District of Central Okanagan website. 

For information or queries about our website please contact:  webmaster@cord.bc.ca

 

 

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