Saanich resident Vernon Lord has started a petition to oppose the proposed bylaw amendments that would increase the number of unrelated occupants allowed in one home. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich resident starts petition to oppose unrelated occupancy limit increase

‘Support for the ‘leave it at four’ is growing,’ says the resident

Saanich resident Vernon Lord has started a petition opposing the proposed bylaw amendment which would increase unrelated occupant limits from four to six.

Unrelated occupancy limits have been a controversial issue in the District since it was brought to council in early 2019.

Most recently, a council meeting at the end of January was dominated by discussions relating to the restrictions on unrelated occupants. After reviewing a staff report containing several options for moving forward, council voted to send the option of increasing the unrelated occupancy limit from four to six to a public hearing.

READ ALSO: Public hearing will focus on number of unrelated occupants allowed in Saanich

Lord, treasurer of the Camosun Community Association, said he has attended every council meeting where unrelated occupancy is discussed. He’s concerned about what the proposed increase will mean for the Saanich neighbourhoods near the University of Victoria and Camosun College campuses.

In an effort to be heard, Lord, who ran for Saanich council in the last election, started an online petition on Change.org as well as a physical petition – both of which he plans to present at the public hearing. He has been going around the District knocking on doors to inform residents of the issue – as he said many residents are unaware – and to collect signatures.

“A groundswell of support for the ‘leave it at four’ is growing,” he said. “Increasing the number in any way will cause irreparable harm.”

In the petition description, Lord explained that while residents acknowledge the high cost of housing in the area, they feel the increase is “not needed, not wanted, short-sighted and counterproductive to lowering the cost of homes in a family neighbourhood.”

READ ALSO: Restrictions on unrelated occupants dominates Saanich council meeting

Lord’s goal is to get as many signatures as possible. By mid-February, more than 100 people had signed the online petition and when the hard copy signatures are added in, the total was about 250, he said.

People who signed the online petition were prompted to leave responses outlining their reasoning. Some expressed concerns about excess noise and others noted the parking is already out of hand.

Lord encourages Saanich residents to do their research and “make an informed decision” on the issue in time for the public hearing which he expects to be scheduled in either March or April.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of Saanichrental marketRentals

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Victoria plumbing company dedicates van for grocery delivery

The Super Plumber uses van to pick up groceries for those in need during COVID-19 pandemic

Digitization of Peninsula News Review by Sidney Museum and Archives preserves historical legacy

Searchable database will ease research and preserve integrity of records

Food safety a good practice amid COVID-19 concerns

BC Centre for Disease Control offers useful food safe information for households

Fictionalized accounts of pandemics offer glimpses into our COVID-19 present

Contagion might capture the contemporary mood, but pandemics have a long tradition in fiction

B.C. announces $3M for food banks to increase capacity during COVID-19

It is not clear how much of the money will flow towards Greater Victoria food banks

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

B.C. issues guidelines about distancing, reusable bags to grocery stores amid COVID-19

Hand sanitizer and markers to keep lines two metres are apart are needed, province says

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Olympics?

Put your knowledge to the test with these 12 questions

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

World COVID-19 update: U.S. expects 100,000 deaths; Oregon declares disaster

Comprehensive update of world news for Sunday, March 19.

B.C. Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

Ferry corporation says ridership down 70-80 per cent over the last week and a half

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Most Read