Council moves (backward) on zoning bylaw

  • Oct. 10, 2013 7:00 a.m.

Queen Charlotte council rescinded the third reading of its controversial zoning bylaw when it met Monday night. “There is a process that has to be followed very exactly,” said mayor Carol Kulesha, “after you have you have the public process at the public hearing, you cannot receive any new information.” As the council has received new information, they must go back one reading and start over, she explained, “and there’s nothing wrong with that.” The new information refers to a change made to the bylaw at the Sept. 25 meeting, said Financial Clerk and Development Services Planner Jen Bulbrook. The change was made to the section describing manure storage facilities on rural residential lots, only allowed on lots of more than 16 hectares. The previous wording had described setbacks that would be 200 metres from residential buildings, and was changed to read that the setback should be 200 metres from adjacent residential lot lines. The change left only a tiny strip of land allowable for that purpose on one of the two lots that fit into that category, said Ms Bulbrook. To fix it, council must rescind the reading, amend the bylaw, holding another public hearing and then hold the readings again, said Mayor Kulesha. “It was a minor miscommunication and a very simple fix,” said QC Chief Administrative Officer Peter Weeber. He also suggested that council take the opportunity to hold one more public meeting about the bylaw. “There is still some discussion about the agricultural issues,” he said. The new public meeting is planned for October 19, the public hearing for October 23 and a special council meeting to do the reading on Oct. 24. This will make a total of five public meetings on the zoning bylaw, and two public hearings. “No one is going to be able to say that we did not try to engage the public,” said Ms Kulesha, “but that doesn’t mean we’re going to be able to satisfy everybody, because we can’t.”