Here’s a tidbit many business people will be interested in: City Council is considering a new Sign Bylaw.
A report from Manager of Development Services Dean Strachan is expected to be presented to Council during its regular meeting starting at 3 pm on Tuesday, August 12. Council is being asked to send the proposed bylaw to the Advisory Planning Commission and the Enhancement Committee for review and comment.
The report says proposed Bylaw 2054 was developed with “the objectives of standardizing format, simplifying regulations, improving clarity and providing regulation consistency.” It will include a new signage application form.
For the better part of the last decade signage has been a hot-button issue for many business owners.
The Annual BC Transit Performance Summary, which is to be presented to Council on Tuesday, says service usage and revenues are down.
Ridership was down 3.3% last year. During the service’s 2013/2014 fiscal year 24,209 passengers had been expected but the actual number of riders was 21,523. That was down from 22,262 in 2012/2013.
The per capita revenue from those riders was just $2.02, resulting in total revenue for 2013/2014 of $47,599, down from a budgeted amount of $48,942. Revenue the previous year had been $45,877.
The actual per-rider operating cost of service was $21.03, up from $17.61 in 2012/2013. That’s a 19.4 per cent increase.
That black welcome sign by the CPR overpass at Victoria Road and the Trans-Canada Highway is about to be brightened up.
The Enhancement Committee is asking Council to authorize staff to paint the sign patina green to make it more visible and consistent with the color of the Courthouse roof.
The Community Housing Society is asking Council to provide it with the option of entering into a 60-year lease for the property on Oscar Street or of obtaining fee simple ownership of the property.
It also wants municipal staff to be authorized to apply to the Homeowner Protection Office for an exemption from Sections 14, 22 and 26 of the Homeowner Protection Act for purpose-built rental properties.
A report to Council from Community Economic Development Director Alan Mason said the Housing Society would like to expedite construction of its planned affordable rental housing project.
The project has been stalled by BC Housing and Mason said “additional delays will lead to increased costs for the project due to winter construction and potentially rising costs of materials and labour.”
“If the lease agreement between the City and the Housing Society for the property is going to take time to complete, it may be simpler for the Housing Society to obtain fee simple ownership of the property to enable the Society to move the project ahead more expeditiously.”
Mason said in his report that it is not uncommon for affordable rental housing projects undertaken by non-profit groups to receive exemptions from the Homeowner Protection Office from the requirements of the Homeowner Protection Act. The exemption would help reduce the cost of the 12-unit project by about $27,000
However, the application must be submitted by the property owner. If Council agrees to a lease agreement with the Housing Society, the City, as the property owner, would have to make application for the exemption subject to Council approval.