A map showing the proposed boundaries of a municipality encompassing Blind Bay and Sorrento which was approved by the CSRD Board on Feb. 21. (CSRD image)

Province to fund study of Sorrento-Blind Bay incorporation

B.C. government commits $100,000 over two years to look at creation of new municipality

The process of investigating the possible incorporation of Sorrento and Blind Bay into an autonomous municipality is being assisted by the provincial government.

In February, the CSRD board voted to endorse hypothetical municipal boundaries which would capture the existing Sorrento town centre and the entire Blind bay residential area.

According to 2016 census data, the population of the incorporated area would be approximately 4,700.

A letter was sent to Selina Robinson, B.C. Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, informing her of the CSRD board’s support for the creation of a new municipality and requesting funding for a study into incorporation and its potential costs.

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The CSRD received a response from the minister on Aug. 7 approving $100,000 in funding over two years for the study. The money will help pay for a detailed look at the incorporation option which is to include an estimate of financial impacts and a full community discussion. Robinson’s letter states the work is to determine if there is sufficient community interest for the process to proceed to a vote on incorporation.

“I am satisfied with the key milestones, objectives and scope of work that is outlined, and appreciate that the Columbia Shuswap Regional District board provided direction as to their preferred alternative (division of Electoral Area) if incorporation does not proceed,” says Robinson in her response.

If the proposed Sorrento-Blind Bay municipality is found unsuitable by the coming study, or does not pass a public referendum, the resolution the CSRD board presented states their preference is that Area C be divided into two electoral areas. The proposed split would make Sorrento, Blind Bay, Notch Hill and the surrounding areas one electoral area and the rest of Area C another.

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