With ongoing reports of flooding and related property damage, now is an appropriate time to provide more information about the Provincial Disaster Financial Assistance Plan that is administered by Emergency Management B.C.
The DFA will cover reasonable costs to replace or restore uninsurable items that are essential to your home, livelihood or community service. However the DFA will not cover loss or damage if insurance was available, nor will it cover recreational and seasonal residences, luxury goods, and land that has been lost through erosion, or landscaping.
DFA is available to BC home owners, tenants, small business and farm owners, charitable or volunteer organizations, and local governments. The program will cover up to 80 per cent of a claim over $1,000 to a maximum of $300,000, provided the claim is filed within 90 days from the date the DFA is authorized. For more information please visit the http://pep.bc.ca/dfa_claims/dfa.html website or contact my office.
This past week $25,000 in funding was announced to provide a new playground for Trout Creek Elementary. Typically these provincial funds are partnered with funds from local parent advisory councils and as a result we have had some very impressive playground structures built in our schools throughout the South Okanagan.
I am sure all would agree that playgrounds provide an important and healthy opportunity for our kids to interact and stay active. I know from the very first upgraded playground I attended in Naramata, the reaction from the kids was simply amazing. Over the years many of these playgrounds became unsafe and were in some cases removed. Therefore, replacing and upgrading playgrounds around the province has led to this initiative, resulting in funding of $ 8 million to date.
On a different theme, as July 1 approaches back country users should be aware of the new alpine regulations that will apply to the Okanagan region under the Wildlife Act.
The new regulations mean that motorized vehicle use above 1,700 metres , will now be restricted to travelling only on existing road and trail networks. The new regulation known as the Okanagan alpine motor vehicle prohibition, excludes snowmobiles.
These regulations are intended to protect sensitive natural areas from damage that can be caused from off road vehicles. For a map to provide greater detail on the areas affected please visit http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/fw/maps/reg8alpine.pdf
Also a reminder that if you do witness an illegal act please contact the RAPP hotline at 1-877-952-7277.
Lastly this week some good news for B.C. Families. A recent Statistics Canada report on health indicators shows that B.C. now has the lowest obesity rates in Canada and some of the best physical activity rates.
B.C. is also currently ranked third in fruit and vegetable consumption and we now have Canada’s lowest smoking rate, with just under 16 per cent still smoking. While this is good news we still have other challenges that include a child obesity rate of seven per cent, with a further 20 per cent being reported as overweight.
It is important to recognize that obesity can lead to heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. To learn more about what you can do to improve your health and diet please visit http://www.physicalactivityline.com/