You will find here answers to many of the questions voiced during the Silver Star Resort Association establishment process.
Has the Task Force conducted a stakeholder engagement program?
Was the Task Force seeking RDNO approval when it originally planned to attend the RDNO Committee of the Whole meeting on July 20, 2016?
Did the RDNO receive an indication from the Silver Star community about how it feels about the proposed Silver Star Resort Association?
The RDNO received 47 letters arguing against the proposal. The RDNO received 244 letters in support of the proposal.
Total number of Silver Star properties represented by letters to the RDNO: 291
These 291 properties equate to 30% of the total number of Silver Star properties
Percentage of properties in support of the proposal, based on letters to the RDNO: 84%
Percentage of properties against the proposal, based on letters to the RDNO: 16%
In addition, the RDNO received the results of a stakeholder survey conducted by the Task Force.
Is a response by 30% of the total Silver Star properties significant when compared to an election or a referendum?
Did the Task Force look at alternatives to a Resort Association?
In addition to a Resort Association, the Task Force considered a Business Improvement District (BIA) and a Regional District Service. A comparison of each was provided at the Open Houses and is on this web site.
Do other successful resort communities use resort associations?
Are the proposed Silver Star Resort Association Bylaws based on those used in other resort associations?
If the Silver Star Resort Association is formed, does a notice have to be placed on Resort Land properties?
The Task Force has sought legal advice on this matter and was advised that it is not necessary to have a notice placed on title but noted that properties included within the Resort Land would be subject to the Resort Associations Act and the Silver Star Resort Association Bylaws.
The Task Force legal counsel has contacted the BC Lands Titles Office and was advised the Registrar of Land Titles cannot place a notation on title to Resort Land property without having first received an application from the Resort Association or by Court Order, in the form prescribed under the Land Title Act.
Have other resort associations placed a notation on title?
Yes, however, as noted above, a notation does not have to be placed on title.
Will the proposed resort association member assessment be in addition to the existing RAM fee?
Is the resort association a replacement for RAM?
If the owner of a Residential Resort Lot does not offer their property for rent will they have to pay an assessment?
A Special Resolution requires that not less than ¾ of the votes cast by such members of the Silver Star Resort Association as being entitled to do so, vote in person or by proxy at a general meeting of the Silver Star Resort Association.
The bylaws require a notice period of 21 days specifying the intention to propose the resolution as a Special Resolution. If a general meeting is not called, then the Special Resolution must be consented to in writing by every member of the Silver Star Resort Association who would have been entitled to vote thereon in person or by proxy at a general meeting of the Silver Star Resort Association and a resolution so consented to shall be deemed to have been duly passed at a general meeting of the Silver Star Resort Association. (Bylaw reference, Part 1.1)
Is it easy for the resort association, once in place, to change the bylaws?
How will the Silver Star Resort Association determine whether a property is being offered for rent?
The Silver Star Resort Association will likely require a statutory declaration (like BC Assessment) stating that the property is not being offered for rent. In addition, the Silver Star Resort Association may monitor web-based accommodation rental sites.
What would the make-up of the Board of Directors of Silver Star Resort Association be?
The bylaws provide for eleven Directors – nine elected and two appointed with the allocation being:
1 Residential Director
2 Residential Lodging Directors
2 At Large Directors
2 Hotel lodging Directors
1 Single owner hotel Director
1 Commercial Director
2 Mountain Operator appointed Directors
In Sun Peaks, the mountain operator has three directors on a board of ten directors and in Whistler the mountain operator has two directors on a board of twelve directors.
Will purely commercial interests dominate the Board?
Purely commercial interests are represented by commercial (one Director); the single hotel owner (one Director); and the mountain operator (two Directors) for a total of four out of eleven Directors.
Shared community and commercial interests are represented by residential lodging (two Directors) and hotel lodging (two Directors) for a total of four out of eleven Directors. Both residential lodging and hotel lodging include residential owners of strata or freehold properties that offer their properties out for rent. These owners will likely use their properties for both commercial and personal purposes.
Purely community interests are represented by residential owners of strata or freehold properties that do not offer their properties for rent. These owners are represented by one Director out of eleven. As noted above, these owners are not required to pay any assessments.
Finally, the two At Large Directors could represent pure commercial interests, pure residential interests, or shared residential and commercial interests for a total of two out of eleven Directors.
Therefore, the Board composition as per the Bylaws of the Silver Star Resort Association allow for a fair representation of both community and commercial interests. Essentially, seven of the eleven Directors could have pure community interests or shared community and commercial interests.
Will Silver Star Resort Association members who do not offer their property for rent be eligible to vote for the two At Large Directors, as well as the one Residential Director?
A residential owner not offering their property for rent can vote for the Residential Director and the two At Large Directors.
Will Silver Star Resort Association members who offer their property for rent be eligible to vote for the two Residential Lodging Directors, the two At Large Directors, and the one Residential Director?
Why should Residential owners who are exempt from Silver Star Resort Association fees, be eligible to vote for Silver Star Resort Association directors, when they have no financial interest in the Silver Star Resort Association?
One of the purposes of the Silver Star Resort Association is to advocate on behalf of the resort community and therefore it is important the whole community should be engaged and represented.
Can a residential property owner not offering their property for rent contribute to the Silver Star Resort Association?
Yes. A residential property owner not offering their property for rent can voluntarily become a Contributing Member.
How many Silver Star Resort Association members are anticipated to be eligible to vote for the one Commercial Director?
The estimate is ten restaurants, nineteen commercial enterprises and about ten service providers for a total of thirty-nine members. This number may change in future as the Resort grows.
How many Silver Star Resort Association members are anticipated to be eligible to vote for the two Hotel Lodging Directors?
Hotel Lodging members would be the condominium/lease hotels which are the Snowbird Lodge, Firelight, Silver Creek, Lord Aberdeen, Pinnacles, Chilcoot and Vance Creek representing approximately 283 members.
How many Silver Star Resort Association members are anticipated to be eligible to vote for the one Single Owner Hotel Lodging Director?
There are three Single Owner Hotels representing 98 rooms; The Bulldog, The Silverlode Inn and Asgard (the old Hostel).
If a homeowner is operating multiple home-based businesses from their residential home, would they be assessed for each business?
How will increases in Silver Star Resort Association assessments be regulated?
The Bylaws allow the board to increase assessments up to the BC Consumer Price Index plus two points. Any other change in the assessments must be approved by a Special Resolution of the membership.
Is there a provision in the By-laws for an annual audit of the Silver Star Resort Association financial statements?
What are the borrowing powers of the Board of the Silver Star Resort Association?
Section 4.4 in the Bylaws sets out the borrowing powers of the Board. Other than for cash-flow purposes, the Board must obtain approval by a Special Resolution of the members of the Silver Star Resort Association to borrow amounts greater than $250,000 in aggregate. The Directors do not have the power to borrow more than $250,000 in aggregate without member approval (unless it is for cash-flow purposes).
Can the Board unilaterally change the borrowing power of the Silver Star Resort Association?
Can the Board unilaterally change any proposed programs or services of the Silver Star Resort Association?
Is there ambiguity with respect to how a property with multiple owners would be treated in the property owner petition process?
Will unpaid Silver Star Resort Association member assessments be treated like unpaid property taxes?
If the Silver Star Resort Association is created, will Silver Star Mountain Resort control the Board?
Does Silver Star Mountain Resort have the ability to control the outcome of the property owner petition?
Are both RAM and Non-RAM properties being offered for rent?
What Provincial Legislation governs Resort Associations?
Both the Societies Act (the "SA") and the Resort Associations Act (the "RAA").
Key provisions of those Acts that relate to the proposed Resort Association in Silver Star include:
- The purpose of a resort association must be to promote, facilitate and encourage the development, maintenance and operation of the resort promotion area (s. 4(1) of the RAA);
- A resort association must not carry on any activity or exercise any power that the resort association is restricted by its bylaws from carrying on or that is contrary to its purposes; or exercise any of the resort association's powers in a manner inconsistent with those restrictions or purposes (s. 7(1) of the SA);
- A director of a resort association must act honestly and in good faith with a view to the best interest of the society; exercise care, diligence and skill that a reasonably prudent individual would exercise in comparable circumstances; and act in accordance with the SA and the Bylaws (s. 53(1)) of the SA);
- A member of a resort association may, without charge, inspect the records of the resort association, which records include all financial statements, meeting minutes, documented disclosure of conflict of interests of directors, copies of member resolutions, register of directors, etc. (s.24(1) of the SA). The Bylaws may restrict a member's ability to inspect the day-to-day accounting and transactional records of the resort associations, minutes of director meetings and director resolutions (s. 24(2)(b) of the SA)
- The minimum quorum a resort association is required to have is 3 members (s. 82(1)(a) of the SA)
- The minimum notice period for general meetings (annual and extraordinary) of a resort association is 7 days if specified in the Bylaws and 14 days if the Bylaws are silent (s. 77(1) of the SA);
- Resort associations must have an auditor (s. 1 of the Societies Act Regulation)
- A member of a resort association may apply to Supreme Court for relief if the member considers that the affairs of the resort association are being conducted or the powers of the association are being exercised in a manner oppressive to the member and one or more other members; or that an act of the resort association has been done or is proposed or that a resolution of
Will the Silver Star Resort Association provide a vehicle to obtain Provincial Grants and Funding?
What is RMI Funding?
RMI funding is a program initiated by the Province in 2006 in which they return a portion of the 8% hotel tax collected in the Province to Resort Municipalities. It is currently only available to 14 Resort Communities: Whistler; Sun Peaks; Rossland; Revelstoke; Fernie, Kimberly; Invermere; Valemount; Golden; Osoyoos; Tofino; Ucluelet; Harrison Hot Springs; Radium Hot Springs. For example, since 2011 Sun Peaks has received $1,613,413 in RMI funding including almost $300,000 annually for summer music events and recreation infrastructure.
What kind of programs/projects are funded by these grants?
RMI has specifically been used in the 14 cited resorts to fund a wide range of activities including festivals, events, village services, public art programs, trail development, village revitalization, museum upgrades, improved direction and interpretational signage, village shuttle services, trail kiosks, mountain bike trails, public gathering spaces, information centers, visitor hubs and green spaces.
What are some benefits of the Silver Star Resort Association?
In addition to providing a vehicle for grants and additional funding, the formation of a Silver Star Resort Association will create a platform from which we can ensure the vibrancy of the resort’s future for residents, homeowners, visitors and businesses alike.
The petition – how was it developed, when did it start, what is the certification process, etc.?
The petition was developed by the Silver Star Task Force using a sample provided by the Province of BC. It was reviewed by the Province of BC and legal counsel familiar with resort associations. Changes as recommended by both were incorporated.
The petition process commenced September 5, 2018 and as of October 2, 2018 all petitions were either hand delivered, emailed or mailed to property owners. There is no legislative time limit governing its progress. Transparency and fairness are the key considerations in the event the proposal succeeds in reaching the 50 percent petition thresholds, and reaches the Minister for review and subsequent decision. The Province have advised the Task Force that it is prudent for the petition process to be conducted within a reasonable length of time. We intend to adhere to this guidance.
The petition will be certified by a person independent from the Task Force. This person was selected from a list provided by the Province of BC and will be contacted when the petition process has met the required support levels.
Per RDNO analysis in September 2017, there are 968 titled properties included in the resort promotion area. Additionally, there are 42 long term lease properties which brings the total number of properties eligible to participate in the petition to 1,010. Also per RDNO analysis, assessed value of all property included in the resort promotion area is $340,961,380 (this will be updated for 2018 assessed values).
The petition is not a vote, it is a show of support for the proposed resort association. If enough support is garnered the petition will then go to the Province of BC for their review and potential approval. A valid property owner petition must have the support of the majority of the property owners representing at least one-half of the assessed value of the parcels within the resort promotion area.
What are the details on the petition process timing?
The Task Force has set a petition completion date of Friday, December 14, 2018.
Petition time frames are as follows:
- July 2018 – construction of the www.ilovesilverstar.com web site
- July 2018 – established an estimated completion date of November 18, 2018 pending launch of web site and start of petition process as of early August
- August 3, 2018 – launched www.ilovesilverstar.com web site – petition process not started due to delays in gathering property owner information
- September 5, 2018 – first batch of petitions given to property owners
- October 2, 2018 – last batch of petitions were mailed to those without email addresses
- October 31, 2018 was set to prompt petition replies
- November 18, 2018 – as noted, this date was established in July 2018 with the expectation that the petition process would start in August 2018 and has been reset to December 14, 2018. See commentary below.
- December 14, 2018 – petition completion date
Guidance received by the Task Force indicated that a three-month petition process would be reasonable. From petition start, being September 5, adding three months puts the date in early December. One additional week added due to postal strike (like the Proportional Voting Referendum) puts the date at Friday December 14, 2018, which could not be anticipated when setting the date in July 2018. It should be noted that a petition has no legislative timeframe requirement. Transparency and fairness, i.e., ensuring all property owners have enough time to review materials is key and we believe these dates provide that.
October 31, 2018 was referenced as a date to have petitions returned. This was put in place to encourage a sense of urgency, as people tend to procrastinate if not provided with guidance on timing.
Unlike a government agency, the Task Force did not have ready access to property ownership information and therefore, had to build the property ownership database. This took much longer than expected and moved the petition start date from early August to early September.
The final batch of petitions was mailed out on October 2, 2018, almost two months after the launch of the website and almost one month after the initial batch.
Finally, the Task Force had not anticipated rotating mail strikes during the property owner petition process. Over 200 property owner petitions were distributed through traditional mail to properties around the world.
The Task Force recognizes that some are going to be upset/concerned about the completion date while others are going to be appreciative of being treated fairly considering the time it took to distribute the petition. We will note that as of the week of November 18, 2018 over 500 signed petitions had been received. Exact numbers and percentages will be released upon the completion of the certification process and confirmation with the Province.
With the petition process completed, what are the next steps?
The petition process was completed December 14, 2018 and certification was received January 31, 2019. Certification was completed by an independent contractor selected from a list provided by the Province. Certification results showed 529 valid petitions were received from the 994 eligible properties at Silver Star Mountain which represents 53.2% of the properties. The second threshold required these properties represent in excess of 50% of assessed value of all properties. Total assessed value at Silver Star Mountain for 2018 is $356,049,947 and the 529 properties represented $200,698,950 or 56.4%.
The next step is a submission to the Province asking that the Minister provide the approvals to create the Silver Star Resort Association. This submission was prepared and received by the Province in paper format February 26, 2019.
When will the Task Force’s submission to the Province requesting Minister approvals for the creation of the proposed Silver Star Resort Association be made available to the public?
The Province received the submission on February 26, 2019. At that time, Ministry staff was asked to complete a preliminary review of the submission to determine if the Ministry would like to see any changes, additions or deletions. As of June 14, 2019, Ministry staff has not formally advised of any changes they would like made to the submission. Accordingly, to not further delay making the submission available, it is being posted with the caveat that the Province may ask for additional information, which could cause the submission to be changed. The submission is in the ‘Petition Process’ section of this website.