Committee supports two property owners objections to bylaw 0
Owners of two properties that were registered as subdivisions more than a century ago appear to have won their battle to be able to subdivide the land.
The planning and development committee has recommended that council exempt the two properties from a bylaw which deemed the properties not to be registered plans of subdivision.
The deeming bylaw effectively merged six lots on Vindin St. owned by David McLean into a single parcel of land and three lots on Everton Rd. owned by Jacques Brunet into a single parcel.
Neither property owner was notified until after the bylaw was passed. Once they were notified both appeared before council to object to the changes.
Wes Crown, the town's planning and development director, explained that the deeming provision of the Planning Act was designed to prevent a property owner from rushing to exercise their right to subdivide if they knew in advance a municipality was going to apply the deeming provision.
The bylaw, Crown said, had been passed to bring the properties into conformity with the town's current planning regime. Both properties, he noted, pre-date all land use planning in the town.
A majority of committee members supported the idea of removing both properties from the bylaw.
Coun. Jim Attwood said he was troubled to be involved in something that inflicts this change. "I didn't get elected to hurt people," he said.
Coun. Pat File who voted against the bylaw when it originally came before council supported the property owners.
Councillors Glenn Canning and Zena Pendlebury agreed with Attwood and back a motion that the bylaw two properties be exempted from the bylaw.
Bryan MacKell, who represented McLean, said that prior to the bylaw his client had the right to sell lots.
"While the Planning Act doesn't require that notice be given to land owners when deeming is applied," he said, "the courts suggest you should."
Brunet had earlier explained he and his late wife, Cathy Merkley, had purchased the property for a home and as an investment for their retirement.