Developer needs to follow municiple government act to initiate bylaw change and rezoning

Human error may have been the cause for a hold up in a land deal now being experienced by a local developer.

Human error may have been the cause for a hold up in a land deal now being experienced by a local developer, but he will still have to go through the legal process to rezone three lots located across the street from the proposed lodge.

Stan Cummings appeared somewhat frustrated at last Monday’s council meeting with the process which council is adhering to regarding the rezoning.

Cummings wants council to give him the green light to subdivide the lots, but he believes legalities are holding the process up.

He said his original application submitted to the town was to re-designate one parcel of land, but somewhere in the process, additional lots, including three lots he wants to rezone, were added to the re-designation without his knowledge.

At council’s Feb. 22 meeting, Cummings met with council to request a change to the zoning of the lots so there would be no need for a back alley.

At that meeting, town planner Liz Armitage said an application for rezoning needed to be made.

“A change in a bylaw requires a first reading, public hearing and second and third reading,” she said.

At council’s March 7 meeting, she said no application had yet been received.

“I don’t see why I have to apply,” said Cummings.

While Armitage was sympathetic to Cummings concerns, she stressed the municipal government act needs to be followed for any bylaw change which requires a public process.

Administration will begin working on the application immediately after it is received, she said.

The servicing for the lots in question was to be tied in to the proposed new lodge and Pankiw said he understood having the lots serviced were part of the tri party agreement between Rimoka, Ponoka County and the developer.

However, town planner Liz Armitage said the subdivision where the lots are located is not part of the agreement, but the utilities located on those lots are.

Due to the possibility of an error on the part of the town’s previous administration, council waived the $750 fee required for the application.

“If administration made the mistake, how can we charge?” said Pankiw. In my opinion, we cannot.”

At the Feb. 22 meeting, concerns were voiced by a couple of people in the gallery about rezoning the lots from medium density to low density and eliminating a back alley.

These concerns can be brought forward at a public hearing.