Agassiz home occupation bylaw moves through readings

"I don't think we're done yet, says Councillor Post

The Home Occupation and Farm Home Plate Bylaw went under the microscope once again in Kent council chambers on Monday night as it moved through second and third reading.

Coun. Duane Post opposed both readings of the amended bylaw, saying that parts of it were inconsistent.

“I think I can respect all the time put into this bylaw but I don’t think all of the needs of the community have been met,” he said. “I don’t think we’re done yet.”

The bylaw sets out what can and cannot be done in a home based business, from the type of businesses allowed to be operated on residential properties, to the number and type of work-related vehicles allowed on the premises. It also outlines the sizes of the homes, the location of the homes on the property, and the number of farm employee homes.

There are numerous businesses that would fall into non-compliance under the newly-written bylaw, Post said.

However, Mayor John Van Laerhoven countered that the bylaw was a way to direct businesses in the future while staff worked out issues with current non-compliant businesses.

Van Laerhoven made it clear he wanted to see the bylaw adopted soon.

“Somehow we have to make a decision,” he said. “There was a lot of public input, but that being said, if there are operations that are still not in compliance, we will talk to them to try to come up with a solution. I think it’s flexible. We’ve already spent, I don’t know how many months on this one.”

Coun. Darcy Striker said he is in favour of the bylaw as it stands.

“You can’t make a bylaw that works for everyone,” he said.

Coun. Holger Schwichtenberg was absent for the meeting.