News and Notices

Thursday, August 25, 2016


August 25, 2016

Ombudsperson investigation of Bowen Island Municipality closed

I am pleased to report that the Municipality has received notice from the Office of the Ombudsperson that a complaint filed under the Ombudsperson Act in 2014 has been closed.

The complaint stated concerns with the process the Municipality followed with respect to applications for the construction of private docks along the shoreline at Cape Roger Curtis, particularly with respect to meetings that were closed to the public.

The Ombudsperson’s investigation revealed that the subjects discussed at the meetings in question were covered under section 90(1) of the Community Charter and that the Municipality was authorized to close these meetings to the public.

The closing summary from the Office of the Ombudsperson concluded that the process followed by the Municipality was generally reasonable, and that there was no need for further investigation.

For further details, please see the Closing Summary from the Office of the Ombudsperson.

Kathy Lalonde
Chief Administrative Officer

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Check your mailbox for the Fall 2016 and Winter 2017 Recreation guide. Start planning your activities for Fall to keep your family healthy and engaged in our vibrant community.

Registration for all Fall and Winter programs opens on August 26, 2016. The recreation guide is also available online. If you have not received a  guide in your mail, hard copies are also available at the Recreation Office at BICS.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Municipal Council has placed a high priority on a series of initiatives to create more housing options. As a small municipality, Bowen doesn’t have the kind of money required to provide subsidized housing. What we can do is enact policies to facilitate more appropriate construction. Today these initiatives are beginning to bear fruit. They range from seniors’ housing to diverse uses for the Community Lands (including affordable housing) to strata apartments to detached secondary suites. Two initiatives are summarized below.

Seniors’ housing

After years of very hard work, Snug Cove House (SCH) will soon have a building of up to 19 units for seniors’ housing. To help finance the project, SCH is selling building lots on Miller Rd. that will provide 6 small homes and 12 duplex units. What makes this project possible is the expansion of the Snug Cove sewer system. This expansion is a co-operative effort between SCH and the Municipality. Tender documents are now being prepared.

Detached secondary suites

Following up on a measure first proposed in 2006, Council gave first reading of a Detached Secondary Suites bylaw at the July 25, 2016 meeting. Under the proposed bylaw, property owners may be allowed to build a secondary living unit in a separate building. If approved, this bylaw will provide a legal framework for the creation of numerous granny flats and cottages to increase our rental stock. Final adoption could take place before the end of 2017.

A Public Hearing regarding Detached Secondary Suites will be held on Monday, April 24, 2017.

More information

For more information on Council’s initiatives for housing options, please read Housing on Bowen, an information card that was mailed to all households in early August, 2016.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Introducing Alerts and Advisories. A one-stop-shop for municipal alerts such as water system interruptions, road closures, beach closures and current fire danger rating.

Check here when you are wondering about fire ban restrictions, water conservation guidelines and current air quality index.

Did you feel a shake? We even have a link to a live seismogram viewer for Bowen Island. Bookmark Alerts and Advisories or click the icon on the front page.

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Use of Beaches and Water Areas Bylaw (No. 418) was adopted by Bowen Island Municipal Council on July 11, 2016. This bylaw will assist the Municipality in moving forward with the five step Mannion Bay Management Strategy, which includes obtaining a Licence of Occupation (LOO), social planning and environmental assessment.

Most provisions of Bylaw 418, including the live-a-aboard section, will not be actively enforced until social planning options and an enforcement strategy is endorsed by Council. However, breaches that result in loss of public safety and enjoyment of the beach areas in Mannion Bay may result in fines issued primarily by the RCMP. Up until the adoption of this bylaw, fines could not be issued for contraventions such as intentional beaching of boats or using the beach as a workshop.

Outside agencies like Vancouver Coastal Health and addiction services will be consulted to assist staff with the creation of social planning options. The enforcement strategy will be developed with the assistance of the RCMP and their marine affiliates.

Municipal staff will bring a social planning and enforcement strategy (the last remaining two steps in the Strategy) forward to Council within the next 3 – 4 months. Bylaw No. 419, also adopted at the July 11 meeting, outlines the fines associated with contraventions of Bylaw 418.


Monday, July 25, 2016

If you are on a municipal water system and are experiencing low water pressure, please click HERE for tips on troubleshooting.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The BIM Economic Development Committee invites individuals interested in business on Bowen Island to sign up for our mailing list. You will receive e-mail updates about topics relating to topics that affect the business community on Bowen.

Click HERE to subscribe.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Welcome, neighbour! The Bowen Island newcomer guide is now available in digital format. Download the PDF. Printed copies are available at Municipal Hall, 981 Artisan Lane.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

“Tell your friends it’s awful here” is the tongue-in-cheek rallying cry of a new community brand identity for Bowen Island, unanimously approved by Municipal Council at a meeting on Monday, June 27, 2016. 

The identity includes the tagline aimed at potential visitors, as well as new design elements for communications from the Municipality as well as Tourism Bowen and local businesses.

Read more

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

What you need to know about heat pumps

Are you interested in reducing your heating bill and carbon footprint? Join us at our next Climate Conversation to learn what heat pumps are and how they can significantly reduce your energy footprint for heating and cooling your home.

Monday, June 27, 2016
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Municipal Hall
Please RSVP to

Two speakers will address the topic: Bowen Islander Jae Mather (Carbon Free Group) has worked for 11 years in the field in the UK and Europe. Barrie Anders (Western Canadian representative for Fujitsu) will provide information on prices, warranties and case histories. Barrie recently completed a project for a First Nation on Haida Gwaii, where they installed 300 ductless heat-pump units.

This session is organized by Bowen in Transition as part of the Municipality’s Climate Action Program.


Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Provincial Health Minister Terry Lake has announced that Bowen Island is to be one of 73 communities across BC that will welcome community paramedicine, a program that offers residents enhanced health services from paramedics.

Community paramedicine will provide Bowen Islanders with better access to primary health care and a more stabilized paramedic presence for emergency response. Under this program, paramedics will provide basic health-care services in partnership with local health-care providers. The services provided may include checking blood pressure, assisting with diabetic care, helping to identify fall hazards, medication assessment, post-injury or illness evaluation, and assisting with respiratory conditions. 

The enhanced role is not intended to replace care provided by health professionals, but rather to complement and support the work these important professionals do each day, delivered in non-urgent settings, in patients’ homes or in the community. Community paramedics will also be able to provide important training such as CPR.

“I’m very pleased that we were chosen to be one of the first communities included in this program,” said Mayor Murray Skeels, “I see this service as being especially beneficial to Islanders who have mobility issues and are receiving extended medical care.”

It is expected that community paramedics in Vancouver Coastal Health region will be ready to begin providing services in patients’ homes by spring of 2017. These patients will be referred by their family physician or other local health care provider.

More information about the Community Paramedicine Initiative can be found on the BC Emergency Health Services website at

Friday, April 1, 2016

A Message from the Mayor

As many of you know, the municipal bylaw that prevents additional docks at Cape Roger Curtis was recently challenged in the Supreme Court of British Columbia. I am pleased to report that our bylaw has been upheld by the Court, and the petition dismissed with costs awarded to the Municipality.

The Honourable Justice Punnett delivered his Reasons for Judgment in Dong v. Bowen Island Municipality (2016 BCSC 553) on March 31, 2016. You can read the full decision at

Murray Skeels
Mayor of Bowen Island


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