Regional Board takes careful steps toward film commission funding

Image Credit: (SOURCE/Regional District of Central Okanagan)

The Okanagan Film Commission is asking for $110,000 from the Regional District of Central Okanagan toward their estimated $201,000 2013 budget.

Commissioner Jon Summerland says the region hosted more than 30 productions during 2012 generating more than $27.5 million in revenue. He also told council five animated series animated series along with video game productions provided employment the entire year.

The District agreed to advance first quarter funding to the Film Commission and will consider the complete funding request as part of the budget discussion Feb. 28.  The Film Commission also receives funding from the North and South Okanagan-Similkameen regional districts, the Boundary Economic Development Commission and the Province of B.C.

Other board highlights:

The Regional Board has approved four special permits for race activities being held this year by the Kelowna Dirt Bike Club at it's facility adjacent to the Bear Creek Forest Service Road. With the permits, the noise bylaw regulations are waived for club hosted race events on the weekends of April 13 to 14, May 17 to 19, Sept. 15, 21 to 22. All other activities at the Kelowna Dirt Bike Club including Wednesday and Sunday practices are subject to the noise bylaw and a mutual consent order that restricts all bikes operating at the track to a maximum sound of 96 decibels. The facility shuts down during the hot, dry months of July and August.

The regional board will form a board committee with staff support to review and develop a more clearly defined policy for the Regional Grant-In-Aid program. The board is concerned about the skyrocketing increase in financial requests from local organizations over the past number of years and recognizing there are limited local financial funding resources available. Th final approval for the 2013 requests will be confirmed during consideration and adoption of the regional district budget on March 28.

There was a presentation to the regional board outlining the 2013 strategic plan for the economic development commission. The document outlines planned activities for the commission in areas of business retention and enhancement, investment attraction and economic development facilitation. A focus on developing and supporting programs for young entrepreneurs and professionals that was initiated during 2012 will continue to grow in 2013. The goal is to encourage young families and workers to take advantage of opportunities that are available to them in the Okanagan.

Regional Board Meetings:

  • Mon. Feb. 25, 7 p.m.
  • Thurs. Feb. 28, 8:30 a.m. Governance and Services Committee preliminary budget discussion.
  • Thurs. March 14 - following 8:30 a.m. Governance and Services preliminary budget discussion.
  • Mon. March 25, 7 p.m.

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