Ancient aboriginal remains may soon rest in peace again.
The remains, as well as nearly 100,000 artifacts - including tools and fish hooks - were found in 2011 during FortisBC's excavation work to upgrade its Huth Avenue substation in Penticton.
Construction was immediately halted, and the site was carefully excavated.
Penticton council will vote tonight on whether to approve a zoning bylaw variance to allow FortisBC to transfer a slice of land where the human remains were re-buried to the Penticton Indian Band.
However, the plan to transfer ownership of the subdivided plot runs afoul of city zoning regulating the minimum lot size.
Fortis has applied for a variance to reduce the lot size requirement for the site from 2,000 square metres to 20.9 square metres. City staff support the application.
In a report to Penticton council, city planner Blake Laven said a team that included band members was formed to conduct further investigation of the site.
"In addition to the remains, close to 100,000 artifacts, including flints, fish hooks and various tools were discovered on the property," Laven said. "(This) indicated that the site was most likely the location of an early village."
The artifacts were removed for cataloguing and preservation and determined to be between 1,200 and 3,000 years old. The human remains were placed in a concrete encasement and re-interred on a
vacant portion of the property close to where they were originally buried more than a thousand years ago.
The area has been fenced off, but can be accessed by band officials for educational and ceremonial purposes.
"The stumbling upon of such rich historical artifacts is a rare occasion and should be celebrated," Laven said in his report. "No construction on the site is being proposed."