Mayor Basran

Mayor Colin Basran says city bylaw officers will start looking for crowds on city properties and remind them that gathering in groups is a bad idea.

The City of Kelowna will start to send bylaw officers to key areas to encourage people to follow health orders.

Mayor Colin Basran told media during a conference call Thursday that the city doesn’t have the power to enforce health orders– that rests with Interior Health and WorkSafeBC. Instead, they will educate.

“Starting next week, a city team will start to visit beaches, boat launches, parks, recreation facilities, and other areas where people gather to remind everyone to take the proper precautions and be respectful of others’ possible health risks,” said Basran.

The mayor said he’ll still encourage tourists to visit Kelowna, but perhaps not as enthusiastically as before the Central Okanagan became a hotspot for COVID-19 in the province.

“This sudden increase in Kelowna shows us how quickly things can change,” he said.

Basran also encouraged people to follow advice from B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.

He said there has been no discussion among council to mandate masks.