Council Matters for September 18, 2019

Council met for about five hours in open meetings on September 18, 2019. Here are some highlights from that meeting:

Council considered an appeal from the owner of 9384 Cottonwood Drive following Council’s September 4, 2019 decision to require demolition of the accessory building on the property after years of unsuccessful attempts to achieve voluntary compliance.  The owner spoke to his appeal, stating that the issues with the accessory building have been resolved. Council heard again from staff and a number of adjacent or affected landowners and decided unanimously to uphold our prior decision and require demolition of the accessory building.

Council then heard from two delegations:

  • Amy Brophy, president of the Chemainus Valley Historical Society and Museum. The society was incorporated in 1963 by residents who wanted to preserve the history of Chemainus Valley and preserve information, records, and artifacts from the area. In the early 1990s, an original museum building was built, and then in 2009, fundraising began to build a new museum. The new museum eventually became integrated with a new Visitor Information Centre, both of which are now located in Waterwheel Square. North Cowichan contributed over $400,000 from the Forest Legacy Fund to the two projects, and the official museum opening occurred this summer!
  • The owner 8996 Chemainus Road, who was requesting reconsideration of Council’s June 20, 2018 decision imposing a requirement to register a covenant on title to restrict the number of dwelling units on the property. The owner requested allowance of up to two dwelling units. Because the property is outside of the urban containment boundary and in an area designated to remain rural, Council voted to re-affirm its motion from June 20, 2018 requiring the covenant to be registered and to limit the number of units.

Council then authorized issuance of two important contracts in support of a new RCMP detachment:

  • A contract with KMBR Architects Planners. Inc. for $1,053,000, plus GST, for architectural and managing consultant services, and
  • A contract with Unitech Construction Ltd. For $875,000, plus GST, for pre-construction and trades construction management services.

You can read a full news release about these contracts and the RCMP project here.

Council confirmed the format and objectives for upcoming budget community meetings. Meetings are scheduled for Oct. 22 (Chemainus), Oct. 24 (Crofton), and Oct. 28 (South End, Ramada Inn). Meetings will be advertised to the community shortly.

Council gave three readings to a new Delegation of Authority Bylaw, which delegates certain powers, duties, and functions to officers and employees. The new bylaw reflects changes to employee titles, updates procurement figures to be consistent with other local governments, and grants authority to the CAO to deal with employee matters.

Council gave three readings to a permissive tax bylaw for tax exemptions for the following:

  • Franciscan Poor Clarie Nuns for 2382 Calais Road (property);
  • Sword Ministries Society for #101, 5855 York Road (property);
  • Vancouver Island Vispassana Society for 2359 Calais Road (building);
  • Vancouver Island Vispassana Society for Wicks Road (building).

Council received a progress report on work underway to support Council’s 2019-2022 Strategic Plan, as well as other operational and strategic projects. Council acknowledged the report’s findings that the volume of work underway is significant and unsustainable at the current pace. Council will consider this information as it develops the 2020 budget.

Council held a public hearing on 2372 Regina Drive, regarding an application to rezone the property to submit a second dwelling. Council then granted the application third reading and adoption.

Council held a public meeting on 6032 Avondale Place, regarding an application for a development variance permit to reduce the minimum side yard setback for a principal building from 2m to 1.94m. Council then issued the development variance permit.

That’s it for this week! Thank you for reading and staying informed. Our next Council meeting is Wednesday, October 2 at 1:30 p.m.

Al Siebring, Mayor
Municipality of North Cowichan