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District sets $265 fee for business licence to operate short-term rental in Sicamous

Fee covers fire safety inspection and further training in building permit program
The District of Sicamous approved the fee an applicant must pay for a business licence to run a short-term rental. (Black Press file photo)

Applicants looking to secure a business licence for a short-term rental might end up paying more than they originally planned.

Earlier in January, the Sicamous Planning and Development Committee updated the requirements for short-term rental business licence applications, which now include a required fire safety inspection, off-street parking information and the licence plate numbers of who is staying at the rental, a list of booking platforms the rental is advertised on, and contact information for a reliable person who can respond to complaints at the site.

READ MORE: Business licensing key to enforcement around short-term rentals in Sicamous

At its Jan. 25 meeting, Sicamous council heard a presentation from Scott Beeching, the district’s development services manager, about the set price for applying for business licences for short-term rentals.

The District of Sicamous currently charges $95 for a business licence that excludes mobile vendors, short-term rentals and bed and breakfast establishments. Recognizing the need to charge for these specific business, a fee of $190 was decided upon for mobile vendors’ licences, and a fee of $265 was set for short-term rentals and bed and breakfasts.

Beeching said that it costs around $160 for Sicamous Fire Chief Brett Ogino and his team to do a fire safety inspection on each rental unit, including associated administrative work. The remaining $105 from the fee is going to be put aside for fire inspection training, so Ogino can have an expanded team to approve applications faster. Beeching also said some funds will go towards training inspectors in the City Reporter program the district currently uses to inspect and approve building permits. There is a cost for training within that program as well as buying and training workers on new software.

Beeching said Ogino and two additional deputies can do the inspections and a trained city official and bylaw officers can help if needed. There are currently about five licences that have been inspected and around 24 applications submitted, Beeching said.

READ MORE: Sicamous council disapproves of proposed location for Secwépemc Landmark Art Project


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Rebecca Willson

About the Author: Rebecca Willson

I took my first step into the journalism industry in November 2022 when I moved to Salmon Arm to work for the Observer and Eagle Valley News. I graduated with a journalism degree in December 2021 from MacEwan University in Edmonton.
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