DCC debate continues in Parksville

One option being considered is to not charge DCCs on any project under $100K

Parksville’s DCCs will increase one way or another, but likely dramatically less than originally proposed.

Last July, Parksville council received a report on the city’s development cost charges (DCC) and proposed raising the rates as much as 50 per cent.

DCCs are meant to have developers pay the increased costs to the city’s road, storm, water, sewer and parkland infrastructure, explained Mayor Chris Burger.

Pamela Lovegrove, city manager of budgets and special projects, presented the proposed update in July explaining the rates haven’t changed in five years.

At that time she explained the lengthy approval process, which includes consultation with stakeholder groups and submission for provincial approval.

Over several meetings last year with groups like the Oceanside Development and Construction Association and Parksville and District Chamber of Commerce, it was clear the development community was not in favour of a substantial increase in the DCCs, stating it would ruin any competitive advantage Parksville might have in attracting development.

On Monday, council received the re-worked proposed bylaw with changes, including dropping a number of dated future projects from the books and not charging DCCs for projects under $100,000.

Lovegrove presented council with five options based on a different estimate for the amount of grants from senior levels of government toward’s the city’s 74 per cent share in a roughly $40 million new Englishman River water intake and treatment facility.

With estimated grants ranging from zero to $8 million, the city’s borrowing requirement would range from $18 million to just under $10 million.

The resulting DCC increase per single family residential unit (currently $14,473) would range from just 0.12 per cent up to 16.48 per cent.

In each option, the water rate increases were similar, in the two to five per cent annual range, and the “municipal assist factor,” or help from the city to encourage development, stayed at one per cent, the lowest allowed in the province.

Staff recommended the conservative option number three, with $4 million in grants, but the discussion among council quickly leaned towards higher grant estimates, not wanting to send the message that they could build the project with less grant money.

Coun. Al Grier, who reminded the rest of council he’s always said DCCs are already too high, proposed option five with calculations based on $8 million in grants and the lowest DCC increase.

Coun. Bill Neufeld expressed frustration with the whole process, saying the calculations were based on a lot of assumptions he didn’t agree with and that the city was already hurting itself by not collecting as much DCC revenue as it could. He said when Las Vegas had to do expensive water work, it raised the DCCs 500 per cent and in Ontario some municipalities charge $42,000, or almost three times as much.

Coun. Marc Lefebvre reiterated the idea that high DCCs could scare away development and therefore the city would lose that potential revenue anyway.

“Let’s not beat each other up over what’s fair,” said Burger.

He said all the local interests need to work together on the water projects to be able to get as much back from senior governments, pointing out that municipalities only receive about 10 per cent of all taxes collected.

With only Neufeld voting against, council voted to proceed with the lowest increase option five, sending it on to the next council meeting for further consideration.

Just Posted

(File photo)
The Parksville Civic and Technology Centre at 100 Jensen Ave. (PQB News file photo)
Parksville 2020 annual report now ready for public feedback

Documents can be viewed online; comments or questions to be submitted before noon on July 5, 2021

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased in Parksville

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

A person stands in a tower on the perimeter of the Number 3 Detention Center in Dabancheng in western China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region on April 23, 2021. Human rights groups and Western nations led by the United States, Britain and Germany accused China of massive crimes against the Uyghur minority and demanded unimpeded access for U.N. experts at a virtual meeting on Wednesday, May 12, 2021 denounced by China as “politically motivated” and based on “lies.” THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Mark Schiefelbein
VIDEO: Trudeau demands truth from China about Uyghurs

PM says Canada has admitted broken Indigenous relationship, unlike China on Uyghurs

The Site C Dam location is seen along the Peace River in Fort St. John, B.C., Tuesday, April 18, 2017. A United Nations agency says Canada’s largest national park is now so threatened that it could likely be placed on the list of World Heritage sites in danger. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Alberta’s Wood Buffalo National Park nears endangered status

UNESCO says industry, poor governance ‘likely’ endanger Canadian World Heritage site

Manitoba premier Brian Pallister makes his way to question period at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg, Wednesday, May 13, 2020.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods
‘Who owns the land?’ Finding residential school graves predicted to be complicated

Federal government recently promised $27 million to find graves across the country

Council members and witnesses from the Hupacasath First Nation, left, and Tseshaht First Nation, right, prepare to raise their respective flags in front of Port Alberni City Hall on Monday, June 21, 2021. The flags will permanently fly as part of the city’s reconciliation work. See more coverage from the flag raising ceremony on page A5. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Vancouver Island First Nations flags to fly permanently at city hall

Addition of flags are one Port Alberni response to reconciliation

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran, middle right, participates in a ribbon-cutting ceremony in honour of the launch of Kelowna’s plasma donor centre at Orchard Plaza Mall on June 22. From left to right: Canadian Blood Services’ business development manager Janna Pantella, Canadian Blood Services’ operational excellence manager Tyler Burke, Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran and Canadian Blood Services’ centre manager Janine Johns. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
B.C.’s first dedicated plasma donor centre opens in Kelowna

The Kelowna location is the third dedicated plasma donor to open in Canada

Children walk with their parents to Sherwood Park Elementary in North Vancouver for the first day back to school on Sept. 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Study reassures parents, teachers that COVID-19 infrequently shared at school

Federally funded study in Vancouver finds risk in the classroom and in the community identical

Conservative MP Kevin Waugh rises during Question Period in the House of Commons Tuesday April 13, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Single-game sports betting about to become legal in Canada

Senate passes bill to take sports gambling away from overseas agencies

Point Roberts is part of the mainland United States but not physically connected to it, to reach the community by land one must pass through Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Closed Canadian border leaves Point Roberts’ only grocery store on verge of closure

‘We’re Americans but we’re not attached to America. It’s easy to forget we’re here,’ says owner Ali Hayton

The Somass Sawmill sits idle in early May 2021. While the kilns have been in use occasionally, and the lot has been used to store woodchips this spring, the mill has been curtailed since July 27, 2017. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni to expropriate Somass Sawmill from Western Forest Products

Sawmill has been ‘indefinitely’ curtailed since 2017

Most Read