The upcoming 2016 Budget brings no good news to the Rural Electoral Area ratepayers as taxes & water rates (Public Systems: Killiney Beach, Westshore Estates, Valley of the Sun/Upper Fintry and Star Place) increased significantly in Central Okanagan West. Electoral Area Planning a budgetary function in to the two EA’s (land use, zoning, building etc.) is the major factor in the increase.
The new “Fringe Area Agreements” within the EA Planning Function Budget are responsible for the majority of the 2016 Property Tax increase in Central Okanagan West. The four “Agreements” were researched and vetted by the staff of the four different municipalities, their four municipal legal teams and then likely discussed for hours in their municipal councils to ensure the best possible deal for each of their respective municipalities.
Only then were these Agreements presented to the two E.A. Directors, on short notice in front of the full Board to be ratified. Outside legal opinion to safeguard the interests of the Electoral Area Taxpayer Requested & Denied on several occasions! Both of the Electoral Area “Elected Representatives” voted against all four Fringe Area Planning Agreements and we were out voted by the “Appointed Representatives” on the Board representing the four Municipalities. Then the Chair of the Board (a Kelowna Councilor) signed all four agreement “on our behalf”.
I believe these Agreements are not in the best interest of EA West residents. They do not represent the wishes of myself the ELECTED REPRESENTATIVE voted in by the residents. From the perspective of the electoral areas when it comes to our Governance this Board is dysfunctional and to a ratepayer or resident it represents TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION. An outside review on the Governance exercised by this Board and its basic lack fairness is long overdue.