2023 in Review, Mayor's Message
2023 - Year in ReviewDecember 8, 2023 Dear Peachland Residents This past year has been incredibly rewarding and equally challenging. During our first year together, Peachland Council hit the ground running with the development of our Strategic Plan. It’s our blueprint for what we want to accomplish in our term and I am very pleased to report we have made impressive progress on many of our goals which we defined under the categories of fiscal responsibility, a vibrant downtown, infrastructure improvements, good governance and an increase in housing choice. As I look back at 2023, several decisions we made are moving us closer to success.
- We are happily anticipating financial support through the federal Housing Accelerator Fund for efforts that remove barriers to increasing our housing supply, with a special emphasis on affordable housing and climate resiliency, both key elements of Council’s vision. We were already working on development application process improvements, making this a serendipitous funding opportunity.
- We are close to partnering with other levels of government to secure much needed childcare spaces in our community.
- We are undertaking asset management in earnest with the development of an Infrastructure & Engineering Department to conduct capacity reviews of our sewer, water and road infrastructure to help plan for the future.
- We held our first “Our Community” Open House with over 400 people in attendance; without a doubt a very successful public event that we mean to continue every year.
- We’re engaging more with the citizens of Peachland with three new committees, the Downtown Revitalization Task Force, the Climate Sustainability and Resiliency Task Force and the Accessibility Advisory Committee. These committees will provide valuable advice to Council in these areas.
- We’ve had several promising development proposals presented to Council which, we believe, will help diversify our community, including the redevelopment of the Ponderosa Golf Course and surrounding neighbourhood.
- Peachland achieved significant cost savings when Council chose to reconsider Phase II of the Peachland Seniors’ Support Society’s affordable housing project on 5th Street. Having learned from Phase 1, and after some challenging conversations, we renegotiated with BC Housing to ensure the municipality would not be entirely on the hook for the Development Cost Charges, that parking would be provided on site and that the District of Peachland would receive any parking-related fees. Win, win, win for everyone.
- Council recognizes the need for infrastructure improvements, specifically our roads, and we have allocated $1.15 million to the upper Peachland areas for road rehabilitation.