Court of Appeal Upholds Decision on Campbell River Tax Bylaw

In January 2015, the B.C. Supreme Court dismissed a challenge brought by TimberWest against the 2014 City of Campbell River Tax Rates Bylaw.  See our post of January 28, 2015 entitled “City of Campbell River Successful Against Challenge to its Tax Rates Bylaw”.

In a decision given January 29, 2016, the British Columbia Court of Appeal upheld the Supreme Court ruling and dismissed TimberWest’s appeal. (more…)

Business Licensing Requirements May Assist in Limiting Marihuana Storefronts – Abbotsford (City) v. Weeds Glass & Gifts Ltd.

A recent decision by the Supreme Court of British Columbia has reinforced the fact that municipalities are under no obligation to license illegal (albeit popular) businesses in their jurisdictions.  In the decision Abbotsford (City) v. Weeds Glass & Gifts Ltd., 2016 BCSC 135, the Court issued an order to the City of Abbotsford granting an injunction against the Respondent that prevented it from operating its business in Abbotsford on the grounds that it did not hold a valid business licence. (more…)

Presentation at North Central LGMA Conference in April

Peter Johnson will be presenting at the North Central LGMA Conference on April 7, 2016, on the topic of competitive procurement requirements for local governments.

Upcoming Planning Law Presentation

On May 12, 2016 Colin Stewart will be presenting in Vancouver on the Anatomy of a Subdivision Servicing Bylaw for Continuing Legal Education.

“New” Local Government Act – Update

Further to our post of December 7, 2015, the revision of the Local Government Act is now in force, as of January 1, 2016. The citation for the statute is R.S.B.C. 2015, c. 1.

Season’s Greetings from Stewart McDannold Stuart

From all of the lawyers and support staff at Stewart McDannold Stuart, we wish you all the best for the holiday season, and a happy and prosperous New Year.

In lieu of sending greeting cards this year, we have made a donation to Victoria’s Sandy Merriman House, which has been providing shelter and support for women in need since 1995.

Exceptions to Conflict of Interest Rules – What is too ‘Remote or Insignificant’?


The recent decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal in Ferri v. Ontario, 2015 ONCA 683, has expanded on one of the statutory exceptions to conflict of interest rules for local government officials.  Though the Ferri case addresses an exception found in s.4(k) of the Ontario Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, a near identical exception exists in s.104(1)(d) of the Community Charter.  As such, it is likely that BC courts will consider the way Ontario courts have interpreted s.4(k) when conducting their own s.104(1)(d) analysis. (more…)

“New” Proposed Local Government Act

Following a process of consolidation and revision of the Local Government Act, a new and updated version of that important statute has been prepared by the Province and is now available to be viewed on the Provincial government website:

A Table of Concordance to find the way from the “old” statute to the “new” one is also available. (more…)

The Homelessness Crisis and Municipal Bylaws: Abbotsford (City) v. Shantz

The recent decision of the BC Supreme Court in Abbotsford (City) v. Shantz, 2015 BCSC 1909, is yet another indication of how the seemingly intractable problem of homelessness in Canadian society continues to create conflict and costs for local governments.   The City of Abbotsford was seeking orders from the Court for a permanent injunction against persons who were camping overnight in Jubilee Park, as well as damages from the named defendant, Barry Shantz. (more…)

Natura Developments v Ladysmith: Supporting the Section 219 Covenant

Section 219 covenants are an essential part of any local government’s land regulation arsenal, and can be especially useful in controlling the development process on properties requiring a great deal of oversight.  In a recent case, Natura Developments Ltd. v. Ladysmith (Town), 2015 BCSC 1673, a case argued by Susan Beach of Stewart McDannold Stuart on behalf of Ladysmith, the Supreme Court of British Columbia upheld Ladysmith’s power to impose a tightly controlled development process through a section 219 covenant. (more…)