Council Highlights provide a snapshot of the progress made on City programs, initiatives and on Council decision-making. For more information on each initiative, please visit the accompanying link where noted. The items are selected highlights from the January 7, 14 and 21, 2021 Council Meetings. To review all the topics discussed, click here to see the full agenda and webcast.
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Victoria Housing Strategy Annual Review
Council received the Victoria Housing Strategy Annual Review 2019 for information with an amendment to the Housing Unit Targets, which considers new population projections, a Housing Needs Assessment, and a Housing Gap Analysis including more detail for the very low, low, and median income brackets and change 950 to 1450 in the report. Staff will work with the consultants to arrive at a target for housing suitable for families that incorporates both latent demand and projected demand and to make that the 2025 target.
Zero Waste Victoria
Council has approved Zero Waste Victoria and directed staff to begin implementing strategies in Zero Waste Victoria as outlined in the short-term action plan. Staff will report back with draft bylaw(s) for Council’s consideration to regulate priority single-use items after new municipal authorities are conferred by the Province. The City will refer the Zero Waste Victoria report to the Board of the Capital Regional District (CRD), and the Mayors and Councils of CRD member Local Governments, for information, and will write the Board of the CRD, requesting that the CRD work with the City of Victoria and other local governments to advocate for “flow control” regulating the export of solid waste outside the region.
Council will also advocate to the Capital Regional District to increase the tipping fee for disposal of unsorted solid waste at the Hartland Landfill, to discourage the disposal of unsorted solid waste and encourage waste reduction/diversion/recycling.
Staff will report back on options for increasing diversion rates from multi-family residential and commercial properties and will explore options for separating pet waste at off-leash dog areas in parks.
Council Member Motion: Working Lunches
Council has voted to suspend the provision for working lunches.
City Exploring Partnership with DVBA to Maintain Vitality of Downtown Impacted by Vandalism
In response to recent vandalism, the City is exploring ways it can partner with the Downtown Victoria Business Association to maintain the vibrancy and vitality of downtown during the ongoing pandemic, and will report back to Council on options.
Employee Relations - IBEW and UBCJ Agreements: Rise and Report from the Closed Meeting January 14, 2021
Council has approved ratification of the tentative agreement set out in the Memorandum of Agreement dated December 22, 2020 between the bargaining representatives of the City of Victoria and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 230 (IBEW). Council also approved ratification of the tentative agreement set out in the Memorandum of Agreement dated January 5, 2021 between the bargaining representatives of the City of Victoria and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Local 1598 (UBCJ).
Municipal Service – Proposed Reciprocal Fire Services Automatic and Mutual Aid Agreement, Districts of Saanich& Oak Bay: Rise and Report from the Closed Meeting January 14, 2021
Council has authorized a Reciprocal Fire Services Automatic and Mutual Aid agreement with the District of Oak Bay and the District of Saanich.
187 Dallas Road (Ogden Point): Request to amend Section 219 Covenant
Council has accepted the request of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority to allow a temporary pedestrian ramp at Ogden Point to remain in place until May 22, 2024, with an option to extend for an additional two years if the ramp is functioning with no significant vehicular or pedestrian safety concerns. If the ramp is functioning in a way that negatively impacts traffic or pedestrian safety, the City can close the ramp at any time until such time that the conditions are corrected to the satisfaction of the City.
PUBLIC HEARING: 1224 Richardson Street: Rezoning Application and Development Permit with Variance Application
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to approve a Rezoning Application and Development Permit with Variances for 1224 Richardson Street. This application will allow for an increase in density and three multiple dwelling buildings.
PUBLIC HEARING: 956 Heywood Avenue: Development Permit with Variances
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to refer a Development Permit with Variances for 956 HeywoodAvenue back to staff to work with the developers to address concerns relating to shading and setbacks and consider reducing parking and/or unit size, or number of units, to reduce the building footprint and/or height. This application would allow for the construction of a 4-storey multiple dwelling building with variances.
PUBLIC HEARING: 429 and 431 Parry Street: Development Variance Permit Application
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to approve a Development Variance Permit for 429 and 431 Parry Street. This application will allow for construction of a new single family dwelling with secondary suite with variances for front, sides and rear yard setbacks.
Victoria Housing Reserve Fund Application: 736 Princess Avenue (Burnside)
Council approved a grant from the Victoria Housing Reserve Fund to the John Howard Society of Victoria in the amount of $280,000 to assist in the construction of a 28-unit affordable housing project at 736 Princess Avenue.
Parks Regulation Bylaw Amendments - Mitigating the Impacts of Sheltering
Council directedstaff to prepare the following amendments to Section 16A of the Parks Regulation Bylaw:
- Prohibit sheltering within parks in areas with high-risk of flooding or other environmental hazards
- Add Central Park to the list of parks where sheltering is prohibited to be in effect as long as the sheltering during pandemic provisions are in effect and that this matter return to Council for additional considerations at the March 4 Committee of the Whole meeting
Council Member Motion: In Response to the National Overdose Crisis: Regulation, Safe Supply and Decriminalization
TheMayor, on behalf of the City of Victoria, will write to the Federal Minister of Health calling on the Government of Canada to declare the overdose crisis a national public health emergency. The letter will call on the Government of Canada to immediately seek input from the people most affected by this crisis and meet with provinces and territories to develop a comprehensive, pan-Canadian overdose action plan, which includes comprehensive supports and full consideration of reforms that other countries have used to significantly reduce drug-related fatalities and stigma, such as legal regulation of illicit drugs to ensure safe supply of pharmaceutical alternatives to toxic street drugs, and decriminalization for personal use.