by Roy Wood
Drag racers want in on airport discussions
Organizers of local drag-racing events received a polite hearing and the promise of a study Monday as they sought a seat at the table for discussions of the future of the Osoyoos Airport.
The Wine Country Racing Association (WCRA) has been holding drag-racing weekends at the airport for 13 years and doesn’t want to be left out of discussions about airport expansion.
The first bullet point in a letter to council outlining the WCRA concerns says: “Concern regarding proposed development at the airport area that would deviate from a ‘multi-use’ facility. As a stakeholder of the Osoyoos Airport, we would like to be better involved and informed.”
WCRA’s David Sabyan told council the recent construction of the Home Building Centre adjacent to the landing strip — which also serves as the drag strip — resulted in a loss of parking space for racers and fans.
In the longer term, there are plans for significant expansion of the airport runway as well as the addition of a taxiway and other facilities.
The group asked council to consider a 10-year agreement with the association to give it the stability needed to plan and finance infrastructure improvements of its own.
In the end, Mayor Sue McKortoff said town staff would look at the issues raised and bring a report back to council, but not likely until well into the new year.
Grant sought to promote cultural sensitivity
Osoyoos will support the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen (RDOS) in seeking a grant to promote cultural sensitivity among emergency management personnel dealing with Indigenous people during times of emergency.
According to a report to council today, the training program would provide education around “the history of Indigenous Peoples, as well as the concepts of cultural safety, cultural humility and the relevance to Indigenous Peoples.”
The report said learning outcomes could include:
- Recognition of Indigenous Peoples’ unique connection to the land;
- Identifying key historical events in the history of Crown-Indigenous relations;
- Understanding the concept of inter-generational trauma and resiliency; and
- Identifying and discussing barriers to reconciliation.
If the RDOS receives the $25,000 grant, training could be provided for town staff, Emergency Support Services personnel and frontline police, fire and ambulance workers.
Lounge possible at Tumbleweed Distillery
The Tumbleweed Distillery may soon have a 30-seat liquor lounge attached to its 6001 Lakeshore Drive location following a decision by council today.
According to report from planning director Gina MacKay, the site meets the local zoning and licensing requirements, but needs local approval before seeking a licence from the liquor distribution branch.
Council voted to delegate authority to MacKay to provide comments to the province if they seek input.
MacKay’s report said the lounge “would contribute to economic sustainability by diversifying the range of businesses and new opportunities.”