The Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities endorsed Qualicum Beach Coun. Teunis Westbroek’s resolution against a potential B.C. government proposal to remove some of the approval powers municipal governments have regarding housing developments.
Westbroek presented a late motion on the floor during the AVICC convention on April 3 and says he was happy to see it pass.
The AVICC, Westbroek said, acknowledged a willingness to overrule municipal land use and dispense with public consultation functions mandated by the Local Government Act, undermines local government’s fundamental responsibility to determine and represent the competing interests and values of their communities, through a fair and accountable public process.
The resolution that was passed calls for the AVICC and the Union of BC Municipalities to petition the B.C. government to “leave the authority to approve all land use developments with the local governments and to make no changes to the fundamental principles embedded in the current legislation, and make no changes to the legislation which might have the effect of doing so.”
Westbroek said there was an amendment to the resolution. The clause “except in collaboration with local governments” was added and was approved.
The AVICC will next forward the resolution to the UBCM for consideration.
Mayor Brian Wiese said he wasn’t sure the motion was going to pass until it was decided that they collaborate with the B.C. government. He was surprised the vote was a lot closer than he expected.
“It was a good discussion and it was one of the good debates that happened all weekend,” said Wiese.
The B.C. government indicated it is considering legislating regulatory amendments this fall to remove some of the decision-making powers of municipal governments for housing permit approvals, saying not enough homes are being built in the province due to the slow processing of development permit approvals.