Some of the participants at the Advisory Planning Committee meeting in August made it clear that if their group (which could be called the Angry Neighbors Club considering the shouting that went on and the vitriol directed at the Capital Regional District planner) is returned to power, they are going to try once again to down-zone Rural A properties in East Sooke.
That is a shame considering all the grief caused by the last attempt. Scores of families have homes in East Sooke because of the availability and affordability of Rural A zoning.
In contrast, the current Otter Point Official Community Plan review committee has recognized and retained the inherent Rural A density of one house per hectare, or 2 1/2 acres, and included incentives for Rural A to convert to fee simple. For example, the settlement areas will have a density of one hectare and a minimum parcel size of one acre, achieved through lot averaging and parks amenity. This was passed unanimously by the committee.
Whatever the intentions were when Rural A was created, it has been around for decades and families have invested their savings and their lives in the terms it offers. A quick look at a zoning map of East Sooke makes it clear that is where future housing stock will come from.
Word is also leaking out from their pre-election pep rally that the same group would like to repeal the secondary suite bylaw and, of course, re-open talks to join Metchosin.
We don’t need to take other peoples’ rights away to have a better community. We need to elect people who will treat their neighbours as they would like to be treated.