Citizens group calls for incentives on EDPA

Saanich is holding an EDPA town hall on Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Garth Homer Centre

Anita Bull stands along an overgrown path along Saanich property near the base of Christmas Hill. Bull says Saanich needs a complete plan to deal with invasive species on its own properties – such as the English ivy strangling a tree and Himalyan blackberries in the backround – before it can hold residents accountable to do the same on private property.

A group of concerned citizens have drafted a report more than 20 pages long with suggestions they believe Saanich staff can use to “fix” the controversial Environmental Development Permit Area bylaw.

The report comes from the Citizens for a Responsible EDPA, led by Ted Lea and Anita Bull, who plan to deliver the report prior to Saanich’s call for public feedback on the EDPA, which ends Nov. 27.

The group believes their report covers the shortfall of incentives and compensation for EDPA-affected landowners while pointing out other issues in need of attention with the bylaw.

“If Saanich expects to be taken seriously about the EDPA and desires to effectively protect and restore private areas of environmentally sensitive areas, it needs to be seen as a leader in restoration of its public lands,” says the Citizens for a Responsible EDPA report.

“This will provide encouragement for the public to do the same with private lands.”

Saanich council adopted the EDPA bylaw in 2012 following public consultation. It’s designed to protect biodiversity, mitigate development impacts and restore degraded ecosystems. However, as of 2015 it has been met with backlash as property owners believe the mandated covenants often protect areas that are no longer sensitive, and that Saanich hasn’t done enough to initiate or encourage active protection of sensitive areas (suggesting Saanich is not acting on invasive species  currently wreaking havoc on sensitive ecosystems).

In a series of extreme cases homeowners are claiming a devaluing of their property, including Larry Trupp, who says his family took a hit of more than $200,000 on a recent sale of property.

By assuming some of the report’s suggestions Saanich could share the burden “among all landowners.”

The report also suggests incentives, such as a 65 per cent property tax exemption to landowners who agree to a permanent (EDPA) conservation covenant, which is in line with B.C.’s Islands Trust act.

Saanich is holding an EDPA town hall on Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Garth Homer Centre.

Saanich’s ongoing EDPA virtual open house is at saanich.ca/edpa.

 

All feedback must be submitted by Nov. 27 to be included in the EDPA review process.

 

 

Just Posted

Saanich walks the walk on crosswalk after student lobbied for improvements

Elanor Teel approached first Saanich about the intersection in March 2017

Firefighters across the region swing into the giving season

Local firefighter says it’s about whole community

Salmon runs produce highs and lows on Vancouver Island this year

Chinook salmon did particularly well on the Island this year

Victoria Disability Resource Centre helps people find jobs

Statistics Canada survey found people with disabilities face higher rate of unemployment

Pedestrian scrambles, underground tunnels and other downtown Victoria quirks

The area around the former Eaton’s Centre had some unique ideas

Victoria axe thrower targets world championships

Former pitcher to compete at World Axe Throwing League Championships in Chicago

POLL: Are you giving to charities over the holiday season?

In the holiday rush, amidst the hustle and bustle to find that… Continue reading

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 4, 2018

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Boeser scores 3, Pettersson has 5 points as Canucks hammer Blues

Vancouver picks up impressive 6-1 win in St. Louis

Battle over Saanich’s Haro Woods not yet over, says report

Draft management plan calls on Saanich to spend $142,500 to improve area

In Canada, the term ‘nationalism’ doesn’t seem to have a bad rap. Here’s why

Data suggest that Canadians don’t see the concept of nationalism the way people do in the United States

Small quake recorded west of Vancouver Island

No injuries or tsunami warning after 5.4 rumble felt some 400 kilometres from Victoria

B.C. suspends Chinese portion of Asian forestry trade mission due to Huawei arrest

Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of U.S. in Vancouver

2-year investigations nets $900,000 in refunds for payday loan customers

Consumer Protection BC says selling practices were ‘aggressive and deceptive’

Most Read