img_7091Subject: Re: Request to be a delegation to Regular Council meeting at the first meeting past ten days from now.
To: Bill Flitton <BFlitton@abbotsford.ca>, Henry Braun <hbraun@abbotsford.ca>, George Murray <gmurray@abbotsford.ca>, Katie Karn <KKarn@abbotsford.ca>, “Ian MacDonald, APD” <imacdonald@abbypd.ca>, Ross Siemens <rsiemens@abbotsford.ca>, Andrew Holota <aholota@blackpress.ca>

Hello Bill:

So the Mayor of Abbotsford and Councillor Siemens do not wish to face up to their very public slander of me. The governance of Abbotsford has been doubtful at times,……..these two men have brought it to another low.

Instead of coming to our neighbourhood and consulting with all 195 property owners in this special group, under Provincial land-use contracts, the City with seemingly zero concern, would have approved the first removal of a mobile, to be replaced by a three-story house and suite.  We know many speculators are waiting in the wings for this re-zoning to pave the way for their plans to turn the affordable housing they bought, into bigger bucks.

Recently, there was a fire at 3559 Thurston Place, on Townline Hill, that destroyed two suites, sadly displacing the renting families, besides extensive damage to the landlord’s portion of the home.  This house is one of many large houses in Abbotsford,    http://www.abbynews.com/news/400773131.html    that enrich landlords by way of illegal suites,  an integral part of the plan for a robust rental business. How safe are illegal suites when fire rages through unauthorized structures?

If the City actually enforced the by-laws, that they write,  there would be room in this town for honest builders to provide affordable housing.  A level playing field is not, and has not been, seen in our city for many years. Who can compete with people who build houses, then surreptitiously turn them into small apartment buildings.  No costly buildings codes, no bothersome safety requirements to meet.  Free flow of rental money, untapped by the taxman.   Nothing contributed on behalf of all these hidden family units towards roads, parks, police, schools, etc………all those societal costs still have to be paid, so weigh heavier on honest tax-payers.This is a Lucrative way to get rich in Abbotsford, and you, at the City know it.

You’re annoyed at me because I object to the zoning you slapped under our LUC community, way back in 2014, that almost no one here knew about.  RS3 DOES NOT ALLOW FOR MOBILES OR MODULARS!  What could you possibly have been thinking,…….. assuming that thought is one of the requirements for leadership?

You (Mssrs. Braun and Siemens) slander me from the safety of your exalted positions, while showing yourselves to be woefully uninformed about so many aspects of my neighbourhood.  We need clear answers, and you evade. You refuse to put down in writing what guarantee we property owners have that RS3 will not be a future tool to force out mobiles.  I don’t want to believe that is your plan, but why do you not provide clear, written answers? I’m certainly not the only resident asking you for clarity on issues affecting our quality of life, and the value of our properties.

You Mayor Braun brush away our collective concerns that allowing ‘monster’ houses might make a significant increase in assessed value and property tax.  Lots of our neighbours just want to LIVE here, so these questions matter a lot. One investor at the Hearing stated his aim to see high density come here.  The row of high density on Rainbow begins at $450,000 per slice of home, according to my friend who went to an open house there.  Obviously not investors with affordable housing on their mind.

So finally you say we’ll have consultations, but strangely you want to combine, and thereby dilute our voices with an entirely different group of properties, who are not mobiles and therefore share none of our unique concerns. They would of course be asking for zoning suited to their needs, not our request that you create a zoning that ensures continuity of the unique features here.

The bully tactics employed by my mayor and councillor are far more suited to third-world hucksterism.  ‘Warning, don’t question us, or you will  pay.’    Mostly such abuse of power achieves the desired effect.  Make an example of someone and you’re the boss now.

There is only a slim hope that BC has got any independent oversight in terms of Ombudsman or Conflict of Interest, but the legislation pertaining to public notice of upcoming hearings has to be changed.  The way things are now is an invitation for corruption. A rich treasure trove, in thousands of properties under Land Use Contracts  are coming up for Discharge. Rezoning, all across BC offers both positive and potentially negative impacts to surrounding neighbourhoods.  So the process has to be far more transparent and accessible to the general public.  Land speculators are on to it, and insiders who ultimately make the zoning changes have to give much more notice than the current, inadequate, minimum ten days to announce a Public Hearing. Right now, as it stands, the BC Government allows local governments to proceed with too little time for the general public to engage meaningfully in a Public Hearing.

One of the questions that I’ve asked, and never got answered is the clause that there is no requirement for a public hearing if ten  (10) property owners come with a request to council.   Must those properties be adjacent to each other?  What size is the area being looked at for the critical mass of ten to effect a zoning change?  Government documents can be really complex, and sometimes changes get made to their sites, so layman generally don’t find the City website easy to negotiate.

This all matters a lot.  We’ve lived here since 1984, love our home, our garden, our neighbourhood.  It’s worth fighting City Hall for our home and land.

Too many questions, too few answers. But Mayor and Council resort to thuggery and lies, in the face of our questions.

You slander me publicly, in my absence,  refuse to spell out your charges, deny Richard or me the right to respond in the same public venue.   I asked the Ombudsman and Conflict of Interest Commissioner to help, so you sent out letters that said nothing about your unseemly behaviour,….....so that you could say you sent me a letter.….

Power has indeed corrupted your minds, and that is where it all starts.  Your attempt to suppress legitimate public challenge about a flawed process does not just border on thuggery, it is thuggery.  You’re abusing the power we granted you.  So I’ll take this to Abbotsford Police Chief Rich, and hope to find there an independent investigative body.

Gerda Peachey

4 building permits listed: 3559 THURSTON PL Abbotsford BC V2T 6Y2

Permit No. Type Application Date Permit Issued Date Work & Inspection Completed Date Status
02212366 Residential – Single Family With Suite – New 18-Nov-2002 18-Dec-2002 11-Aug-2003 Completed
05115151 Secondary Suite – Removal of Multiple Suites 16-Feb-2005 16-Feb-2005 20-Feb-2006 Completed
05115152 Residential – Single Family Dwelling – Alteration 16-Feb-2005 16-Feb-2005 20-Feb-2006 Completed
10120897 Secondary Suite – Removal of Multiple Suites 14-Jan-2010 14-Jan-2010 10-Feb-2010 Completed
For more information, please contact the Building Permits and Licences Division by email or phone 604.864.5525 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday, excluding statutory holidays; or visit the office in person at 1st Floor City Hall, 32315 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford.
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