The North Valley Gymnastics Society’s application for a Vernon council discretionary grant of $25,000 was not accepted. (Morning Star - file photo)

The North Valley Gymnastics Society’s application for a Vernon council discretionary grant of $25,000 was not accepted. (Morning Star - file photo)

Vernon doles out discretionary grants

Eight groups out of 26 applications will split more than $25,000; some notables were left out

Limited funds for disbursement. Didn’t meet criteria.

Those are the two main reasons 18 organizations did not receive City of Vernon council discretionary grants, while eight organizations were awarded a total of $25,533 worth of grants.

The city has $50,000 per year for discretionary grants and usually distribute in two intakes, one in the spring, one in the fall. Last year’s grants were handed out only once due to the fall municipal election.

“I’m a little disappointed in the lack of depth of these recommendations,” said Coun. Scott Anderson. “In previous years, there were detailed justifications for saying no or yes. This year it’s just a standard ‘Vernon has limited funds.’ Well that doesn’t tell me anything.

“The BC Dragoons requested $10,000 and I have no idea what they requested, what the justifications were, and no idea why we said no to them. I have trouble rubber stamping something put in front of me like this. I can’t vote for something I know nothing about essentially.”

Couns. Akbal Mund and Kari Gares, and Mayor Victor Cumming sit on the three-person committee that selects and distributes the grants.

“We had requests for more than $240,000 and we have $50,000 to distribute between organizations that apply,” said Mund. “The three of us on the committee went through the applications, we said ‘let’s look at what the terms of reference (for the grants) are, what each individual believes who they should vote for to support.’ We rated them and compared notes.

“There’s no easy way to spread $50,000 out. It was decided by consensus the groups that were getting the grants were the ones we all agreed upon. The ones we didn’t, we didn’t have the funds or they didn’t meet the criteria. It’s that simple.”

The largest grant awarded was a one-time grant of $6,000 (of $8,000 requested) by the Vernon Horseshoe Club for site preparation for the 2020 provincial championships.

Among the applications rejected was one for $25,000 by the North Valley Gymnastics Society to help defer costs of their new facility. The society came before council to specifically request the money and were told to apply for a discretionary grant. Yet the report to council said the society “does not meet the discretionary grant criteria.”

“We were all excited about it (society application) at the time,” said Coun. Brian Quiring. “What went wrong?”

“They didn’t meet the criteria under the terms of reference,” said Mund. “We don’t give out funds to groups who ask for us money but they were told to apply for a grant. Under the terms of reference, they didn’t fall under the criteria. Whoever brought that up hasn’t sat on the committee.”

Added Gares: “It’s not a question of playing favourites. If that was the case, we would have vastly different outcomes than we see today.”

More grants will be awarded in the fall.

Just Posted

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Asia Youngman (right) is pictured shooting another short film she wrote and directed titled Hatha. (Luba Popovic)
Peachland set to star in fantasy thriller film about N’xaxaitk’w — a.k.a. the Ogopogo

The film will follow an Indigenous teen as she navigates peer pressure, bullying and identity

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

Earls On Top at 211 Bernard Avenue in Kelowna. (Google Maps photo)
Downtown Kelowna’s Earls ordered closed after COVID-19 transmission

Earls on Top on Bernard Avenue will be closed from June 18 to June 27

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Jeanette Megens
KCR: Volunteering is sharing your story

Kelowna Community Resources shares stories of its volunteers in a weekly column

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

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

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Most Read