By Lyonel Doherty
Oliver Town council is seeking permission from Park Place Strata Corporation to rent its unit to locum doctors.
At Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting, council approved a motion to ask Park Place to change its bylaws to allow the Town to rent its condominium to Interior Health to accommodate locums who work in Oliver.
Last year the Town became an owner of one of the units in a tax sale.
The idea to let locums use the unit came from Councillor Petra Veintimilla, who is a liaison with Interior Health.
Chief Administrative Officer Cathy Cowan said Park Place changed their bylaws to allow rentals, but renters have to be age 55 or over. She said council could request that the strata change this bylaw to accommodate locums under 55.
But Councillor Jack Bennest said he would like to see the Town sell the unit as soon as possible, noting they should not get involved in any type of ownership.
But Mayor Ron Hovanes supported the original motion, saying it would be nice to have permission to rent to locums. However, he did admit some reticence to the idea.
“I’m not sure if we want to be in a landlord position,” he said, noting the problems with some renters trashing units. But he conceded they wouldn’t have to worry about locums doing that.
Councillor Larry Schwartzenberger suggested that Interior Health might want to partner with the Town in furnishing the unit for locums.
The motion passed, with Bennest opposed.
Meanwhile, Greyback Construction is currently remediating the building after Park Place owners signed a contract with the company.
Owners are hoping to be back in their units as early as May.
Keryn Timmerman, president of the strata council, said they should be back home in three months.
“The spontaneous applause that followed the vote to accept the Greyback proposal and the hugs that followed were clear evidence of the happiness that all of the Park Place owners are feeling,” Timmerman said.
Stuart Syme, treasurer of the strata council, added, “The further evidence of the mood and commitment of the owners is seen in the number of cheques that have been sent to the strata office already – even though the first installment on the levy is not due until the beginning of March.”
The 43 owners share the $500,000 project cost according to a formula based on unit size. The average levy amount is $12,000 payable in three installments of $4,000. A number of owners have already sent their cheques for their entire share.