PENTICTON - With hope for a new era in transparency and improved city communication with its residents, Penticton’s mayor and council heard details of a new Skaha Lake Marina and Water Park Development proposal from staff at today’s council meeting.
Acting chief administrative officer Mitch Moroziuk presented council with two proposed agreements hammered out between the city and Trio Marine Group since spring, this afternoon, Nov.1, in reaction to growing public backlash against the original agreement that called for private development of Skaha Lake park greenspace with a waterslide.
No decison was made in front of a crowded gallery as council heard the proposals for information only.
Mayor Andrew Jakubeit won't go as far to say the waterslides were a bad decision, but does admit the way council chose to engage the community was.
He says the new proposals have removed the most contentious issues and “should settle issues with the waterslide park.”
"It's been a long, divisive issue in our community and difficult to find a solution that works for everyone involved. It's a tall order to find a solution that respects the wishes of the community, serves to compliment the needs of park users, but also reflects the agreement with Trio and the rights and obligations it contains," Jakubeit says.
Moroziuk outlined a settlement and an enhanced marina agreement that would eliminate any discussion of a waterslide and ensure there would be no commercial development of green space without public approval.
The new proposal would give Trio first rights to development of future park amenities and the right to develop an in-lake water park, should the public approve.
The settlement agreement would terminate all existing agreements with Trio by entering into an enhanced marina agreement, which calls for an expanded marina to 100 boat slips, along with an expanded restaurant and retail area amounting to a $1.5 million investment.
The city stands to make between two and 4.5 per cent on restaurant revenue, and between two and nine per cent on any of Trio’s remaining investments in the park.
Moroziuk offered four recommendations in total, including not entering into the proposed agreements, conducting further negotiations with Trio that would involve further financial analysis and spending on litigation over the two lawsuits rising out of the original agreement, or just waiting our the present agreement, a course that would result in further expenditures on the lawsuits.
Coun. Max Picton thanked city staff for their work with Trio Marine to come to terms with a new agreement, noting the city didn’t have the option of tearing up the original agreement and a workable alternative had to be negotiated.
The new proposals are available for viewing on the city’s webpage. The proposals will go before the public at a town hall meeting Tuesday, Nov. 8 at the Trade and Convention Centre, before returning to council at the the next meeting on Nov. 15.
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