Regarding Sams Auto/Mr. Rashead property corner of Somenos Road and Highway 18: Mr. Rashead has occupied the property in question for some time now and has conducted his business with minimal impact to the neighborhood and has provided a service that is clearly in demand given the steady flow of vehicles through his facility.
Because of the siting of the property there is a limited market for its uses. For this reason I am thankful that he is there with his business.
The alternative would likely be another barren gas station site as evidenced at the Herd Road or James Street intersections. Worse yet, in an underutilized condition, it could become a graffiti target much like the eyesore that is the former Brownsey block site. Far better, I believe, that North Cowichan exhaust some efforts in the monitoring and policing of those sites than in the dogged pursuit of an individual.
We have been residents of Somenos Road for 17 years and chose the area because of the rural nature and surrounding properties. Had we wanted the manicured landscapes and palatial homes of Oak Bay or Uplands we would also have been willing to accept the stringent bylaws governing what was acceptable uses of our properties. North Cowichan should be less concerned about the letter of the law and more willing to work with the owner for accommodations; remembering that businesses cannot spend constantly on improvements without a revenue source to finance the outlay.