Editorial: Bylaw not yet set in stone

Bylaw 500 open for public input at Wednesday meeting

District of Sooke council is struggling with trying to make sense of Bylaw 500 and the implications for residents and businesses in Sooke. It is an extremely  complicated document and deserves extra consideration before any decisions are made. Decisions which could impact those properties that had their zoning changed without prior notice.

An open house on Bylaw 500 will be held this evening from 4 to 8 p.m. at the municipal hall council chambers. Presentations by district staff will be made at 5 and 7 p.m.

This is an opportunity for residents who’s property may be affected to come and ask questions and get answers. It might be smart for residents with larger properties and commercial properties to check to see what their zoning is and what can be done or not done with their properties in the future. Some residents already discovered huge implications when they went to subdivide. Thus the review of the bylaw in the first place.

Mayor Wendal Milne, on Dec. 3 at a Special Council Meeting made the decision to delay the deadline for the completion of the bylaw so that council could grapple with the content of the bylaw. This was a wise move as rushing to meet a deadline would not be in the best interests of the taxpayers and the district. Now council can pour over the details and make decisions which will return some property rights and zonings.

“We’re the authors of our own mix up here,” said Milne.