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Regarding the $50k Diamond Head Report on the EDPA

Cadboro Bay Residents

Please
find attached a letter  I wrote to Saanich Mayor Richard Atwell and
councillors  in response to the meeting to be held at the Pearkes Centre
on Saturday October 28th   regarding the $50,000 dollar  Diamond Head
Report on the EDPA that affects so many residents of Cadboro Bay and
area.  It is vital at as many as possible go to the meeting and speak
out on this very expensive bylaw .  The 50 thousand is just the tip of
the iceberg.

Thank you

Michael Ross

[tel. and email supplied]


Response to the Diamond
Head Report Meeting Oct. 28, 2017

Can Saanich
Afford the EDPA Bylaw?

The Diamond Head Report covered most
aspects of the Environmental Development Permit Area (EDPA) bylaw but certain
important issues were omitted. Having lived in Saanich for 50 years, half a
century, I have never encountered such a divisive bylaw, or other issue, which
has generated such extensive distrust, angst, anger, outrage, fear and hatred
directed against Saanich staff and councillors.

1.   
The current form of the EDPA is a jumble of
botanical hopes and development oversight.
The two should have been better separated.  The former now seems to represent reckless
environmentalism on wispy evidence, trumping the generally accepted and
legitimate expectations of 2,200 households.
The shabby drawing of the mapping lines exposes hurried incompetence.  No boots on the ground evidence was gathered
just self-serving guesswork.

2.   
The
Diamond Head report cost $50,000.00 for the taxpayer, but interestingly it does
not clarify who should pay for the implementation of the bylaw, property value
impairment, restrictive owner’s use and running costs.   The true costs of the project, necessary in
any scientific experiment, were never assessed nor shared with those afflicted
nor the voters of Saanich, all of whom are financially exposed to varying
degrees.  The Rollo report page 29
“Municipal staff rarely perceive or concede negative economic effects”.  The same appears true of Council.  Failure to disclose the financial
implications of a new bylaw to the voters represents irresponsibility at all
levels of municipal administration.

3.   
As
this is a communal issue such costs and restrictions should be shared by the
entire community, not 4% of homesteads.  
The expense of this punitive bylaw, born by the few, is morally
unacceptable.

4.   
All
scientific experiments require a set duration of time to establish a
result.   None was declared.  We have lived on our property for 45 years
clearing invasive species as recently documented by an accredited
biologist.  The experiment of chance
regrowth of native species has been done on our property and many similar large
formal gardens on 10 Mile Point, and other areas for over 100 years and the
results are in, there are no surviving endangered species.    It is time to stop and transfer the dream to
Chatham, Discovery and Jemmy Jones Islands and appropriate portions of Saanich
public parks.

5.   
Conclusion:  In addition to the Diamond Head Report’s
concerns, the present form of the EDPA is ill conceived with two disjointed
components: one based on flimsy science and the other treating long developed
properties exactly the same as undeveloped properties.  Try this on the grassed areas of the
Vancouver waterfront.  The issues are
identical.   The bylaw is brutally coercive, fundamentally
unjust and has become a catastrophe for the respect of our municipality.  Council appears to have been swamped by a
single interest clique at their cost and the cost of the communality of
Saanich.

Michael
A. Ross

[Address supplied]

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