Evictions rescinded for Maple Bay boat owners

Boat owners moored outside marinas in Maple Bay will get a reprieve while the Municipality of North Cowichan figures out a long-term policy for the vessels.

On July 9, all owners were issued eviction notices by the municipality, whether they had been moored there for decades or days. Council received a report from Director of Development Scott Mack on Wednesday that included, among other recommendations, the suggestion that the notices be rescinded until formal and updated regulations can be created.

Mack’s recommendations did not come with a date attached, but council agreed that the issue should be dealt with before June 30, 2015, prior to the summer boating season.

The other recommendations, all of which were accepted by council, included asking staff to work closely with Transport Canada and the RCMP to take immediate action against derelict vessels and illegal mooring buoys, to investigate enhanced zoning regulations for boats and buoys, to look into lease agreements with the provincial government in order go get regulatory control over key marine areas, and to consult with the boating community, the Maple Bay Community Association, and other stakeholders.

Coun. Al Siebring put forth an amendment, which council agreed on, to have staff look into the possibility of putting a sewage pump-out station in the area, perhaps using the Maple Bay sewer reserve fund.

Mack’s report was received just minutes after Bryan Dixon spoke to council on behalf of the Birds Eye Cove Boaters Group, an informal association of owners of boats moored in Maple Bay.

Dixon addressed the issue of the Trojan, a derelict tugboat which, according to Dixon, some boaters said represented "the worst of the boating community," and which had been at the centre of many concerns about moorage in Maple Bay. The Trojan was towed from the bay by the RCMP in July.

Dixon emphasized that the Trojan is not typical of those who use mooring buoys in Maple Bay, and that he doesn’t want all boat owners to be painted with the same brush.

"Other than the Trojan, all of the boats are in good repair and used regularly," he stated.

Boat owners are particularly interested in the state of the bay, and want to work with North Cowichan to help create regulations.

"We are probably more concerned about the safety and usability of the harbour than anyone else, because we use it," he said.

Dixon said perceived concerns of fire and property damage, environment, derelict vessels and sewage discharge are all non-issues. Easy solutions include regular enforcement of existing regulations, an available pump-out facility, collaboration between groups before conflicts arise, and engagement with boaters, all of which were addressed in Mack’s report to council.

Just Posted

Striking Western Forest Products workers could lose benefits in September

Union, forest company at odds over Vancouver Island benefit payments as strike enters third month

Flashback: Library concerns, a new park and new seniors plans

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Lexi Bainas has been combing through old… Continue reading

Take your family to the Cobble Hill Fair this Saturday

Animals, rides, those wonderful displays in the hall, food and fun in store in Cobble Hill

Motor circuit expansion proposal to go to public hearing

North Cowichan gives applications third readings at packed meeting

Firefighters can’t burn down houses anymore, so they need a training facility

In the old days, everyone gathered to watch a ‘practice fire’, safety regulations won’t allow that now

New police force in Surrey must avoid VPD, RCMP errors made in Pickton case: Oppal

Boots are scheduled to be on the ground by spring 2021

Conan turns to the Property Brothers for tips on buying Greenland

Jonathan Scott suggests removing glaciers and mountains to bring in ‘more natural light’

Forests minister visits B.C. town hit by multiple mill shutdowns

A third of Mackenzie turns out for rally, not much to cheer about

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

B.C. music teacher accused of sexual misconduct involving girls

Police believe other victims could be out there after the arrest of Lamar Victor Alviar

B.C. family stranded in Croatia desperate to come home

Funds being raised to bring back mom and two children

$5-million lotto ticket sold in Nanaimo

Someone matched all six numbers in Wednesday’s 6/49 draw

Most Read