The city asking the public if they want to pursue legal action against the province and their decision to override the city on the Victory Church issue. (Jesse Day Western News)

The city asking the public if they want to pursue legal action against the province and their decision to override the city on the Victory Church issue. (Jesse Day Western News)

Penticton ready to sue province over homeless shelter

City council voted unanimously to authorize legal action

The City of Penticton is ready to sue the provincial government over the Victory Church homeless shelter.

Council voted unanimously to authorize legal action, following feedback from the public gathered through a survey.

“I think the city has no choice but to stand up for the betterment of our entire community. And a resolution is not to hardship one faction of our community to support another,” said Coun. Judy Sentes. “The fear that these seniors were expecting, the disrespect to the properties is just unacceptable. I think the majority of our community wishes for us to continue to put this position forward.”

In addition, staff will be drafting a letter on behalf of the city to formally request Premier John Horgan directly intervene as well.

That survey found that 51 per cent of the 3,472 responses from the public either agreed or strongly agreed with going forward with legal action at the taxpayers’ expense. A random survey of the public showed less support for legal action.

No registration was required to complete the survey, and it saw the highest response count of a city survey so far, according to staff.

READ MORE: Penticton city staff recommend legal action against B.C. over shelter

The city’s estimated cost for legal action would range from $200,000 to $300,000.

Based on the shelter guidelines presented to the Safety and Security Committee on Monday, the Victory Church location would not be automatically disqualified.

Other aspects of the recommendation that council voted to move forward with include:

Directing staff to continue to negotiate solutions with the Province, BC Housing, the landlord, and operator to immediately close the 352 Winnipeg Street temporary winter shelter and respectfully transition all 42 current shelter tenants into other housing situations.

Directing staff to continue to work with the landlord to reduce nuisances and calls-for-service (bylaw, fire, and RCMP) under the Good Neighbour Bylaw, and for the City to take the appropriate measures to designate 352 Winnipeg Street as a Nuisance Property under the Good Neighbour Bylaw if nuisances and calls-for-service do not immediately stop.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC HousingPenticton

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Accused drug trafficker to plead to federal, provincial charges in June

Matthew Straume said he’d missed his last court date because he was ill

Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Grand Forks sex crimes trial adjourned until summer

The trial was set to begin at the city courthouse Wednesday, May 5

Photo: Kathleen Saylors
Grand Forks city council votes down motion to support Penticton in paramountcy battle

Coun. Neil Krog insisted Penticton’s issue with Victoria is about city bylaws, not homelessness

The burnt-out remains of a fifth-wheel trailer stand at Highway 3, near the Kettleside RV Park Wednesday, May 5. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Grand Forks fire department investigating fifth-wheel blaze

Two people in the trailer escaped without injury, according to Dep. Fire Chief Stephane Dionne

Bob Keating was CBC’s Kootenays correspondent for 21 years. He retired last month to start a podcasting company. Photo: Tyler Harper
The voice of the Kootenays: CBC correspondent Bob Keating retires

Keating had reported out of Nelson since 2000

Thursday, Feb. 4: RDKB Chief Engineer Darryl Funk hoists a banner commemorating last year’s championship season by the Bantam House Bruins. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Bantam Bruins honoured at hair-raising banner ceremony at Grand Forks’ Jack Goddard Arena

Asst. coach Mike Tollis said he reluctantly gave in to the team’s victory wish that he cut his pony tale

B.C.’s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Dip in COVID-19 cases with 572 newly announced in B.C.

No new deaths have been reported but hospitalized patients are up to 481, with 161 being treated in intensive care

Solar panels on a parking garage at the University of B.C. will be used to separate water into oxygen and hydrogen, the latter captured to supply a vehicle filling station. (UBC video)
UBC parkade project to use solar energy for hydrogen vehicles

Demonstration project gets $5.6M in low-carbon fuel credits

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

FILE – A student arrives at school as teachers dressed in red participate in a solidarity march to raise awareness about cases of COVID-19 at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. ‘should be able to’ offer 1st dose of COVID vaccine to kids 12+ by end of June: Henry

Health Canada authorized the vaccine for younger teens this morning

A woman in the Harrison Mills area was attacked by a cougar on Tuesday, May 4. B.C. Conservation Officers killed two male cougars in the area; the attack was determined to be predatory in nature. (File photo)
2 cougars killed following attack on woman in Agassiz area

Attack victim remains in hospital in stable condition

A woman wears a face mask and shield to curb the spread of COVID-19 while walking in North Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday, January 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. CDC updates info, acknowledging small respiratory droplets can spread COVID-19

Large droplets, not aerosols had been fixture of public health messaging for many months

A picture of Shirley Ann Soosay was rendered from a postmortem photographer and circulated on social media. (DDP graphic)
B.C. genealogist key to naming murder victim in decades-old California cold case

In July 1980, Shirley Ann Soosay was raped and stabbed to death

Most Read