Vernon secondary suite requirement shot down, by Richard Rolke (short version), March 14/2014

Vernon officials are backing away from a secondary suite rule even though they still believe it’s the right thing to do. Lawyers have questioned a city bylaw that would force the owner to reside on a property that has a secondary rental suite, so the bylaw could ultimately be rescinded.

The city has obtained a legal opinion to determine if it can require a property owner to live in either the primary unit or the secondary suite in the case of single-detached housing. “The advice received indicates that the city cannot legally have such a requirement in the zoning bylaw. We will still react to building complaints and parking complaints and they (suites) will still require a business license”, said planner Dale Rintoul in a report. Council has not made a final decision on rescinding the bylaw as it wants more staff information on legal implications as well as options to deal with enforcement of problems arising from suites.

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