Agency Questions Safety of RV Park Residents
The Courtenay, British Columbia, city council has decided to crack the whip with the owners of Maple Pool Campground, the Comox Valley Echo reported.
It is giving them 90 days to respond to its complaint that the land's use for trailers and mobile homes is contrary to the property's zoning.
The inference is that tough action is pending over the use of the Headquarters Road land for multiple occupation, especially as the site is prone to flooding.
As most of the residents in about 40 mobile units are on very low incomes, the implications to them as individuals of any tough enforcement would be serious.
That would be especially so if they had to vacate the site in the middle of winter.
So last night Councillor Doug Hillian called on his fellow councillors to seek an urgent round table meeting among the relevant government ministries, local social service organizations and the municipality on the issue.
He said it was essential to plan ahead for the consequences of any enforcement, as it could result in a considerable number of people suddenly facing acute housing needs.
Such action would "impact the most vulnerable section of the population," he suggested, adding: "We need to find some solutions, otherwise we will face intractable problems."
The council, which had earlier discussed the bylaw enforcement issue behind closed doors, agreed to seek such a meeting.
Until now, the city, located on the inland coast of Vancouver Island, had not taken action on the alleged contravention of zoning bylaws, despite the fact that the campground has been in place for many years.
Generally, city hall only moves to enforce bylaws when there is a public complaint. But in this case, City Administrator Sandy Gray confirmed it was the municipality itself that had initiated action.
Gray noted that last winter the site had had to be evacuated twice and people re-housed temporarily because of severe flooding. The matter had to be addressed.
Late last night the campground's owners said they would need to see what was in the city's letter before deciding whether to make any public comment.