Secondary suites report finished, more discussion coming

The Secondary Suites Review Committee has finished its long and quite extensive consultation and has handed in its final report (PDF) to council last night. Predictably, council opted to talk a little bit more about it. Leading off the talking was Councillor Jensen, chair of the committee, who started by thanking everybody that participated, especially the committee itself (which, as far as I could tell, didn’t have a single renter on it) and the average person. He emphasized that this was just the start of the process, something echoed by other councillors. For example, Councillor Cassidy felt that the current conversation (that led to the report) wasn’t “balanced” as it “pre-supposed that council was going to legalize secondary suites”. Personally I think that the report is quite balanced and that the questions asked followed in that vein. Apparently Cassidy and I don’t see eye to eye on this on.

So where do go from here? Council has asked Mark Brennan, the Chief Administrative Officer, to report back on the report and next steps. Perceptive readers will note that Mark led the Town of View Royal’s staff as their CAO during its process to legalize suites. He noted that Oak Bay is a little different as the council there was mostly focused on the masses of new construction in View Royal. In contrast, Oak Bay currently builds about a dozen new houses a year. They also gave all the existing suites a free pass as far as building codes went, requiring only the extra parking and maximum square footage requirements to be met. Anyway, stay glued to the television sets my readers. Secondary suites will be legal in Oak Bay before I am retired.