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Council denies kennel application due to complaints

Robert Enns speaks out against an application for a development variance permit on Yale Road to build a kennel at the March 27 District of Hope council meeting. Council decided to deny the request for the permit because of the complaints they heard that evening. - X. Y. Zeng
Robert Enns speaks out against an application for a development variance permit on Yale Road to build a kennel at the March 27 District of Hope council meeting. Council decided to deny the request for the permit because of the complaints they heard that evening.
— image credit: X. Y. Zeng

Silver Creek PAC requests

Following up with the Silver Creek Elementary Parent Advisory Committee's (PAC) request at the March 13 District of Hope council meeting, council has decided to give them a letter of support for funding from the Rick Hansen Foundation Access4All Program, that will help them fund their playground project, at the March 27 council meeting.

However, council held back granting them the $15,000 that they asked for. Coun. Scott Medlock and Gerry Dyble said they supported this but wanted to wait until they finalize their budget. Dyble added that they should consider applying for grants-in-aid for additional funding. Coun. Donna Kropp said she would like to help, but not to the full amount.

Enforce election sign bylaw

Council decided to enforce the sign bylaw, which prohibits political signs being placed more than 30 days before an election.

That means that signs should not go up before April 9, given the provincial election's May 9 date.

Mayor Wilfried Vicktor said he has received a “fair number of complaints about the number of signs that have gone up.”

Council and staff referred to the person in contravention only as “the candidate,” and said that attempts to contact him have proved unsuccessful.

Vicktor further suggested that some form of penalty, such as compensating staff time required to remove signs, or a fine per day or per sign, be imposed. Currently, there are no fines for contravening the bylaw.

No kennel for Yale Road resident

All councillors voted against the development variance permit to build a kennel at 63490 Yale Rd. after neighbours complained.

Letters and neighbours present at the meeting complained of noise, zoning issues and harm possible to a nearby water sources.

Furthermore, neighbours also said that there is an illegal number of dogs on the property itself. That property can only have three licensed dogs under the animal control bylaw, although kennels can have four. There are no limits on puppies below four months old.

“Our neighbourhood is nice and quiet. We feel that it [was] until this happened. Now it's not quiet,” said neighbour Robert Enns.

District corporate services officer Donna Bellingham said the District did not receive any complains, although Enns said he does not see a point complaining every ten minutes nor would anyone answer their complaints at 3 a.m.

This issue aggrieves Enns the most because the dogs are kept in a building near his living space.

New resident Melissa Stevens, who moved to her property in October, argued that her property values will be affected and hears barking throughout the day.

The proponent did not attend the public hearing, which Kropp noticed.

“There's always two sides to every story,” said Kropp. “I think it's only fair to hear everything.”

Kropp said she is not against having a kennel, but neighbours' welfare must be taken into account. She suggested that staff should investigate a property before a kennel application comes forward.

Vicktor interpreted that as asking staff to decide whether the application should be approved or denied, hence nullifying the role of council, and disagreed with Kropp.

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