Highlights from regular Council meetings provide a brief summary of some items of broad public interest. The summary is not inclusive of all agenda items. Please refer to www.sidney.ca for the full agenda, minutes, and webcast.
New Climate Action Reserve Fund is created to support Town projects that reduce carbon emissions
To help the Town reach is carbon emissions goals, a New Climate Action Reserve Fund has been established. Annual contributions to the fund are expected to begin next year. The fund will begin with a balance of $87,331, generated through carbon tax rebates under BC’s Climate Action Revenue Incentive Program.
The Town’s Climate Action Plan is currently being updated and is on track to be finalized in 2022. Through OCP engagement to date, the community has shown support for the following emissions reduction targets, which will be brought forward for consideration with the OCP bylaw:
- 50% below 2007 levels by the year 2030
- Carbon neutrality by 2050
Town to continue proactive enforcement of non-compliant short-term rentals
A report to Council on short-term rentals in Sidney found that 71 of approximately 100 active units in Sidney comply - or are working to comply - with the Town’s zoning bylaw. There are approximately 17 short-term rental units in Sidney that are unable to become compliant with the bylaw and will be required to cease operating. Staff will be approaching the remaining property owners to see if there is a willingness to ensure compliance.
The Town’s short-term rental regulations are meant to provide homeowners the opportunity to rent out space on their property, as long as their property meets certain conditions, while protecting much-needed rental stock, and minimizing unfair competition to the hotel industry.
Sidney Street Market to continue in alternate location in 2022 as pandemic uncertainty continues
Council approved a request from the organizers of the Sidney Street Market (Westcoast Impressions) to once again hold a market in the Mary Winspear parking lot in 2022, instead of Beacon Avenue. Evolving COVID-19 restrictions have made it more feasible to plan the market in the parking lot where it was held in 2021, as the space can be adapted and controlled to support health restrictions if necessary. The market is expected to return to Beacon Avenue in 2023.
Monthly Daytime Parking Passes approved for Parking Lot B
It will soon be possible to purchase a monthly daytime parking pass at the newly re-opened Parking Lot B, located at the site of the former Fire Hall between Third and Second Street, just north of Beacon Avenue. The parking lot has 35 public parking spaces and re-opened this fall after a two-year closure with the completion of the Oceanna Building. Offering a limited number of monthly daytime passes at this lot brings it into alignment with the same passes currently available at Parking Lots C, E and F. None of these Town lots allow overnight parking. A public parking map for Sidney’s downtown area can be found here.
Mayor Cliff McNeil-Smith