Vandalism in West Kelowna on the rise

Vandalism in West Kelowna is getting out of hand - this in a new staff report.

Parks Supervisor, Stacey Harding - who helped prepare the report - says incidents of vandalism have been increasing, and they're getting more severe, and he sees a correlation to an increase in the homeless population.

He says the purpose of the report, to be presented to council on Tuesday, is to draw attention to how the problem has been impacting staff.

"What it's doing is really taking us away from our regular tasks that we try to do in the parks department," says Harding. "Public works functions to beautify and maintain services, but we're not really getting to our core services right now, in that we're spending a lot of time every morning cleaning up after some of these messes."   

Harding says bylaw officials and the RCMP plan to increase efforts to crack down on vandalism, and his staff is now working with police to track incidents.

Some of the more severe cases include public washrooms being trashed, shots fired at a Welcome to West Kelowna sign and campfires set at the newly opened Memorial Park Amphitheatre.