Restaurateurs seek credit for water expenses

Sicamous restaurateurs are calling on the district to provide some form of tax or utility reduction…

Sicamous restaurateurs are calling on the district to provide some form of tax or utility reduction until a stable water supply is available.

Owners/operators of five restaurants – Moose Mulligan’s, Joe Schmucks, Anchor Pub, Tim Hortons and Husky – have written District of Sicamous mayor and council to express concerns relating to Sicamous’ ongoing water quality issues that have an impact on their businesses.

The letter asks that an incentive be in place to commercial operations that rely on large quantities of water to help them continue  to operate during future boil notices until a new treatment facility is in place.

“This incentive could come in the form of a civic tax exemption for a period of two to three years or a combination of such an exemption and utility reduction,” the letter states, adding the savings from the above could allow for the installation of a filtration system as recommended by the district, or to install small tanks while absorbing the cost of delivery.

The restaurateurs support the district in its pursuit of a long-term solution for water treatment, but note such a project might not be completed for another two to four years. The consortium argues an interim solution is needed immediately for the coming, less-profitable winter months, noting their businesses employ more than 80 people during the winter and well over 100 in the summer.

“The ‘commercial large use water stability credit,’ or whatever you wish to call it would be equally as beneficial to our community if not more so as it will keep doors open and locals employed.”

Council was told last month by district staff that a meeting was being organized with the restaurateurs to discuss the concerns raised in their letter.