This year there’s a new incentive for Peachland residents to FireSmart their property in the form of a rebate of up to $500.
Last month Peachland council was informed the municipality was awarded $150,000 for the 2022 FireSmart program, which is 100 per cent funded through the UBCM program. Of that $150,000, one-third has been set aside for the rebate program, said Peachland fire chief Dennis Craig.
The residential rebate program applies to residential property owners or homeowners that complete eligible FireSmart activities.
Rebates are limited to 50 per cent of the total cost of the eligible activities and up to $500 per property.
“That can include roof replacement; they would get up to $500 back, as well we can claim their own personal sweat and tears doing labour on their yard,” said Craig. “It’s not just hard costs regarding the work, it’s actually labour as well.”
Before beginning any work, residents are encouraged to contact the fire hall as homeowners must have received a FireSmart or Home Partners assessment prior to conducting the work to be eligible for the rebate.
“This is new for us. It’s our first time offering this up. We have $50,000 allocated from our grant. When the money is gone, it’s gone for this program, and we’ll reapply in subsequent years,” said Craig.
He also noted the opportunity is limited in nature and it is expected the program will be oversubscribed.
In addition to the rebate, the grant funding will be used for a number of other FireSmart related programs, including:
- A joint TV commercial with West Kelowna to air during Global OK newscasts;
- A review of land use and development in wildfire prone areas;
- FireSmart and wildfire mitigation specialist training for paid-on call members;
- FireSmart home ignition zone assessments and Home Partners Program wildfire mitigation assessments; and
- Community chipping events and disposal bins in select locations for residential property or homeowners who have undertaken their own vegetation management.