Consistency Between an Official Community Plan and Zoning Bylaw

On April 18, 2011, the BC Supreme Court delivered its reasons for judgment in Residents and Ratepayers of Central Saanich Society v. Central Saanich (District). This decision builds on the existing case law that addresses the issue of consistency between official community plans (OCP) and zoning bylaws. Section 884(2) of the Local Government Act requires that all bylaws adopted after the OCP must be consistent with that plan. (more…)

May 2011 – Bylaw Ban on Puppy Sales Upheld

The Supreme Court of BC has upheld a City of Richmond bylaw that bans the sale of dogs and puppies from pet stores.

In International Bio Research v. Richmond (City), 2011 BCSC 471, three pet stores challenged the validity of the bylaw on various grounds including that it was ultra vires, that it was unreasonable and discriminatory, and that it was passed in bad faith. The bylaw added “puppies and dogs” to a list of canidae that pet stores were prohibited from selling. The sale of dogs by dog breeders and commercial kennels was not affected by the bylaw. (more…)

No-Fly Zoning Doesn’t Fly

The Supreme Court of Canada (the “SCC”) has confirmed that the federal government, by virtue of its constitutional jurisdiction over aeronautics, has the exclusive authority to regulate the location of aerodromes. Municipalities and provinces have no authority to do so. (more…)

Reserve Land – Tenures Available to Local Governments – Part 2

In the Summer 2010 issue of Logo Law, I reviewed the forms of tenure available to local governments on Indian reserve lands that are subject to the land management provisions of the Indian Act. The purpose of that article was to outline the tenure options for local governments that wish to locate or expand works on reserve land. This article deals with tenure options on reserve in two other contexts, namely:

  • reserve lands governed by a Land Code adopted by the first nation pursuant to the First Nations Land Management Act (the “FNLMA”); and
  • reserve lands that have been allotted by band council under the Indian Act to individual members of the first nation.


E-Communication Privacy Considerations for Local Governments

Use of E-communication Tools

Local governments wishing to improve communications with their citizens have found technology to be a valuable tool. Information can be disseminated broadly at minimal cost. Email communications and websites can enable a local government to be more transparent. Recognizing these valuable benefits, local governments are beginning to use these tools, for example, by posting video of their council meetings on their websites for viewing by the general public. (more…)

March 2011 – Court of Appeal Reverses Trial Court in “Canada Line” Damages For Nuisance Case

The BC Court of Appeal has reversed the trial judge’s decision, and has dismissed the plaintiff’s claim in nuisance arising out of the construction of the “Canada Line” Skytrain line in Susan Heyes Inc. (Hazel & Co.) v. South Coast BC Transportation Authority, 2011 BCCA 77 (”Heyes”). For a discussion of the trial decision, see Colin Stewart’s article in the Summer 2009 issue of LoGo. (more…)

November 2010 – New Supreme Court Rules – What Everybody In Local Government Needs To Know

On July 1, 2010 new rules governing the conduct of litigation in the Supreme Court of British Columbia came into effect. These new rules completely replaced the existing rules which had been effect since 1979. The following are the essential elements of the new rules that everybody in local government needs to know. (more…)

March 2010 – Replacing Units in Mobile Home Parks

The law regarding mobile home parks that are non-conforming under current zoning bylaws has just been clarified in Stroshin et al. v. The City of Parksville (“Stroshin”). For some time, it has been unclear whether the occupiers of mobile home spaces in non-conforming mobile home parks could replace their older, smaller mobile homes with newer, larger mobile homes. In Stroshin, the Honourable Mr. Justice Wong denied the Petitioner the ability to replace older, smaller units with newer, larger ones on the ground that it would contravene section 911 of the Local Government Act (the “Act”). Indeed, Mr. Justice Wong went further than the position taken by the City of Parksville (“City”) and held that replacement units were not permitted by section 911 at all. (more…)

February 2010 – Supreme Court of Canada Decision in Tercon Contractors Ltd. v. British Columbia (Ministry of Transportation and Highways), 2010 SCC 4

On February 12, 2010, the Supreme Court of the Canada released its long-awaited judgment in the tendering law case of Tercon Contractors Ltd. v. British Columbia (Ministry of Transportation and Highways), 2010 SCC 4 (“Tercon”). (more…)

December 2009 – Anti-camping Bylaw’s Unconstitutional Status Upheld by Court of Appeal

On December 9, 2009 the British Columbia Court of Appeal released its reasons for judgment in the Victoria (City) v. Adams case.

The decision of the Trial Judge (released in October 2008 and reported on in our client bulletin at received widespread attention. Given the importance of the issues, a number of additional parties sought and were granted intervenor status at the Court of Appeal, including the Union of British Columbia Municipalities, the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association, The Poverty and Human Rights Centre, and Pivot Legal Society. The Attorney General of British Columbia participated as an intervenor on the appeal as well. (more…)