Saanich resident Vernon Lord has started a petition to oppose the proposed bylaw amendments that would increase the number of unrelated occupants allowed in one home. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich resident starts petition to oppose unrelated occupancy limit increase

‘Support for the ‘leave it at four’ is growing,’ says the resident

Saanich resident Vernon Lord has started a petition opposing the proposed bylaw amendment which would increase unrelated occupant limits from four to six.

Unrelated occupancy limits have been a controversial issue in the District since it was brought to council in early 2019.

Most recently, a council meeting at the end of January was dominated by discussions relating to the restrictions on unrelated occupants. After reviewing a staff report containing several options for moving forward, council voted to send the option of increasing the unrelated occupancy limit from four to six to a public hearing.

READ ALSO: Public hearing will focus on number of unrelated occupants allowed in Saanich

Lord, treasurer of the Camosun Community Association, said he has attended every council meeting where unrelated occupancy is discussed. He’s concerned about what the proposed increase will mean for the Saanich neighbourhoods near the University of Victoria and Camosun College campuses.

In an effort to be heard, Lord, who ran for Saanich council in the last election, started an online petition on Change.org as well as a physical petition – both of which he plans to present at the public hearing. He has been going around the District knocking on doors to inform residents of the issue – as he said many residents are unaware – and to collect signatures.

“A groundswell of support for the ‘leave it at four’ is growing,” he said. “Increasing the number in any way will cause irreparable harm.”

In the petition description, Lord explained that while residents acknowledge the high cost of housing in the area, they feel the increase is “not needed, not wanted, short-sighted and counterproductive to lowering the cost of homes in a family neighbourhood.”

READ ALSO: Restrictions on unrelated occupants dominates Saanich council meeting

Lord’s goal is to get as many signatures as possible. By mid-February, more than 100 people had signed the online petition and when the hard copy signatures are added in, the total was about 250, he said.

People who signed the online petition were prompted to leave responses outlining their reasoning. Some expressed concerns about excess noise and others noted the parking is already out of hand.

Lord encourages Saanich residents to do their research and “make an informed decision” on the issue in time for the public hearing which he expects to be scheduled in either March or April.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of Saanichrental marketRentals

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vehicle ends up upside-down in creek along Happy Valley Road

One motorist in care of emergency services

Greater Victoria writer releases first novel inspired by U.S. school shootings

Dear Mr. President tells thought provoking story of victims left behind

Saanich mayor joins fight to protect local wildlife from rat poisoning after second owl dies

Mayor Fred Haynes to meet with provincial, federal pest control industry representatives

Sidney fire responds to fewer but more severe calls during pandemic

Rise in severity linked to changes in routine during COVID-19 pandemic

Minimum wage goes up June 1 in B.C. as businesses face COVID-19 challenges

The minimum wage jumps by 75 cents to $14.60 an hour on Monday

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Man dies in ATV accident south of Nanaimo

Incident happened on backroad Friday night in Nanaimo Lakes area

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Surrey mayor’s party under fire for ‘sickening’ tweet accusing northern B.C. RCMP of murder

Mayor Doug McCallum says tweet, Facebook post ‘sent out by unauthorized person’

Father’s Day Walk Run for prostate cancer will be virtual event this year throughout B.C.

The annual fundraiser for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC has brought in $2.5 million since 1999

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Most Read