Kelowna council wants to know more about noisy boat and bike enforcement

Kelowna Mounties have said they're not ready to enforce any city-based bylaw aimed at dulling the roar of boat and bike engines, but local politicians aren't willing to let the issue go just yet.

"I am troubled by rescinding the noise bylaw," said Coun. Luke Stack, at the Monday meeting when a motion was introduced to fall in line with the local police force, and backtrack on the first three readings of the bylaw introduced last August.

"This is an issue we've heard about many times by people in the community, regarding noisy bikes downtown and noisy boats on the lake. This was brought forth by Supt. Bill McKinnon, and he indicated getting the (required) decibel readers was achievable. I was under the belief it would be implementable by this summer."

Had the bylaw been adopted, McKinnon had told council his police would be ready by summer to monitor vehicle sounds. Any engine producing 92 decibels of sound while idling or 96 decibels while driving would leave drivers with a hefty financial penalty.

The whole plan, however, was put on hold until a public education campaign was rolled out, and the decibel readers and police training were also in place.

Before those measures got underway, however, McKinnon learned that the provincial government was looking to implement a similar policy, so the push to snuff out noise at a city level was cast aside.

That rationale, however, clearly didn't resonate with city council, who said they'd like a better explanation, considering the province had already been working on a similar law last year when they moved ahead with a city based initiative.

Coun. Robert Hobson noted he didn't have confidence that the province would be coming forward with a solution to noisy engines in the near future.

Council will request McKinnon make a council appearance to explain the change in tack.

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