The City of Kelowna is reopening council chambers for public attendance, allowing residents to come to meetings in person for the first time in more than six months.
Provincial public health orders barring in-person attendance at the meetings came down in December 2020 to help quell the spread of COVID-19. Since then, all council meetings and public hearings have only been available online.
Residents will be welcomed back to council chambers for regular meetings on Monday, July 12, and the first in-person public hearing will come Tuesday, July 27.
“Providing the webcasting option has helped to ensure that council decision-making remained accessible to the public throughout the pandemic,” said city clerk Stephen Fleming.
“And now that the provincial health officer order permits us to welcome back members of the public into the room, our community will have options for how they would like to participate and stay informed — in person, or remotely.”
Step 3 of B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan does still mandate some safety precautions including limiting capacity to 50 people or 50 per cent, whichever is greater. As such, council chambers, outfitted to seat 134, will be able to accommodate 67 people.
Meetings will also still be available online at kelowna.ca/council.