New treasurer hired for Regional District of North Okanagan

Stephen Banmen was previously with the District of Lake Country

Stephen Banmen is the new general manager of finance for the Regional District of North Okanagan.

Stephen Banmen is the new general manager of finance for the Regional District of North Okanagan.

A treasurer with local government experience will be keeping an eye on the books at the Regional District of North Okanagan.

Stephen Banmen will take up new duties as general manager of finance Nov. 3.

“The board is excited to have Mr. Banmen as a key member of staff as we commence our budget planning for 2015,” said Rick Fairbairn, RDNO vice-chairperson.

Banmen was most recently the chief financial officer and deputy chief administrative officer in Lake Country. He also served as a financial analyst in Langley.

He will hit the ground running as RDNO develops its budget for the coming year.

“I’m sure Stephen will have some ideas and want to his stamp on things,” said David Sewell, who was general manager of finance before being promoted to chief administrative officer in June.

RDNO directors held their first budget meeting Wednesday.

“We plan on having input from a variety of stakeholders,” said Sewell, adding that the process will include public input.

The first draft of the budget will be before the board Jan. 21 and the document is expected to be adopted March 4.

A number of forces could impact the district’s bottom line, including economic conditions, regulations and demographics.

The election of new board members Nov. 15 could possibly slow down the process.

“Is there some way to bring the newly elected officials up to speed so they’re not sitting there thinking, ‘I don’t know what’s going on?'” said director Mike Macnabb.

Among the issues that will be considered during budget deliberations will be solid waste, a new Greater Vernon cultural plan and a review of the building inspection service.

RDNO could also proceed with $70 million in upgrades to the Greater Vernon water utility.

“That’s a question mark until we get past the (Nov. 15 borrowing) referendum,” said Sewell.

 

Vernon Morning Star

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