The owner of a controversial Lake Country motel has 45 days to get everyone out and board it up.

Town council on Tuesday unanimously supported staff’s recommendation to effectively order the sealing-up of the Airport Inn Lakeside.

The Highway 97 property has a long history of non-compliance with building regulations, and has been the focus of many health and safety investigations.

Owner Raif Fleihan has filed, and lost, successive appeals against town decisions aimed at trying to get the property cleaned up and made safe.

People are currently staying there even though the motel does not have an occupancy permit.

“The big issue for us is that the people who are staying there might be in peril if there was any kind of emergency, because our fire department doesn’t know of any evacuation plan for the motel,” Mayor James Baker said.

“Hopefully, the owner will shut it down now, but we’ll see,” Baker said.

An appeal of the decision through an arbitrator is possible, Baker acknowledged.

Motel owner Raif Fleihan was not at the council meeting. Baker said he understands Fleihan is trying to sell the property.