Mara Lake is one of the significant water resources across the Okanagan-Shuswap region that will fall under increasing sustainability pressure as the anticipated population growth for the region continues in this century. (File photo)

Osoyoos mayor continues as Okanagan Basin Water Board chair

Sue McKortoff will serve her third consecutive term as water board chair

Osoyoos Mayor Sue McKortoff will serve a third consecutive term as chair of the Okanagan Basin Water Board (OBWB).

She will be joined by vice-chair Cindy Fortin, mayor of Peachland, and Okanagan Valley regional district board representatives Victor Cumming, Rick Fairbairn and Bob Fleming, RDNO; James Baker and Colin Basran, RDCO; and Doug Holmes and Rick Knodel, RDSO.

Other water board appointees are Westbank First Nation Chief Chris Derickson, representing the Okanagan Nation Alliance; Bob Hrasko, Water Supply Association of B.C.; and Denise Neilson, Okanagan Water Stewardship Council chair.

McKortoff called the OBWB a “one of a kind” water management advisory body in Canada, for taking a lead role in water issues facing the valley, from the need to monitor and protect local waters from invasive mussels to future management of the Okanagan Lake water level.

READ MORE: Water board claims Canada Water Agency creation a long-term dream

READ MORE: Global expert says Okanagan water supply reaching a critical stage

“The theme of one of our last meetings was one valley, one water, and that about sums it up,” she said.

McKortoff said the OBWB provides a sounding board for understanding conflicting issues among communities regarding water concerns and how to find solutions.

One of those issues the board has embraced is the water level management of Okanagan Lake after concerns were initially raised about infrastructure damage caused by flooding under the current policies by the Peachland council last year.

‘The OBWB has sent letters to all our Okanagan municipalities asking them to write letters to the province about concerns they have concerning the regulation policies for Okanagan Lake. If we all speak as one it gives us a stronger message for the provincial government,” McKortoff said.

“People in the federal and provincial governments don’t always share the urgency we have in many cases as we do because we live it.”

She said OBWB has also been involved with preliminary forums taking place concerning a promise by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to establish the Canada Water Agency, with the hope it will standardize water preservation and safety management regulations across Canada.

While COVID will have an impact, McKortoff said the water board also is planning to host a water science forum in Osoyoos for this fall, following up on successful similar events that were held in 2007, 2011 and 2015.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Water

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

Just Posted

This Dec. 2, 2020, file photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows vials of the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. (Johnson & Johnson via AP)
Interior Health notes 80 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend

108 people in the region have died from the virus

Cottonwoods Care Home in Kelowna. (Google Maps)
New COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna care home includes fully vaccinated seniors: Henry

Two staff and 10 residents tested positive at Cottonwoods Care Centre

A render of the proposed expansion at Kelowna Christian School. (City of Kelowna)
City council backs major Kelowna Christian School expansion

The proposal will now go to the Agricultural Land Commission

Vernon’s Jim Cotter and Team B.C. defeated the Yukon 9-2 for their first win Monday, March 8, at the 2021 Tim Hortons Brier Canadian men’s curling championship in Calgary. (Black Press - file photo)
B.C. picks up first win at Brier

Steve Laycock and teammates cruise past the Yukon 9-2 Monday at the Calgary bubble

Kelowna RCMP are looking to identify this man, who was involved in an attempted robbery in Rutland. (Kelowna RCMP)
Kelowna RCMP searchng for attempted robbery suspect

The incident happened in the 800-block of Rutland Road North

Five Kelowna writers are featured in an anthology that launched in time for International Women's Day. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
International Women’s Day: Book exploring fears features Kelowna writers

The book has launched in time for International Women’s Day

Montreal Canadiens right wing Paul Byron (41) fights for control of the puck with Vancouver Canucks defenceman Quinn Hughes (43) during first period NHL action in Vancouver, Monday, March 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Captain Clutch: Horvat nets shootout winner as Canucks edge Habs 2-1

Vancouver, Montreal tangle again on Wednesday

A special committee has been appointed to look at reforming B.C.’s police act and is inviting the public to make submissions until April 30, 2021. (Black Press media file)
Have thoughts on B.C.’s review of the provincial Police Act?

Submissions will be accepted until April 30

Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, an Okanagan based-law practice, and provides Kelowna Capital News with weekly stories from the world of local, national and international law. (Contributed)
Kootnekoff: Royal Dismissal

Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, her diverse legal career spans over 20 years

Excerpts from a conversation between Bria Fisher and the fake truLOCAL job. Fisher had signed a job agreement and was prepared to start work for what she thought was truLOCAL before she learned it was a scam. (Contributed)
B.C. woman warning others after losing $3,000 in job scam

Bria Fisher was hired by what she thought was a Canadian company, only to be out thousands

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

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix provide a regular update on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, March 2, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 cases: 545 Saturday, 532 Sunday, 385 Monday

Focus on Prince Rupert, Lower Mainland large workplaces

Rising accident rates and payout costs have contributed to billion-dollar deficits at ICBC. (Comox Valley Record)
B.C. appealing decision keeping ICBC injury cases in court

David Eby vows to ‘clip wings’ of personal injury lawyers

Most Read