Land-Use "Bullies" Put On Notice

Zoe Blunt with local supporters at Langford City Hall, Feb. 27, 2009. Photo: Edward Hill, Goldstream Gazette

Vancouver Island Community Forest Action Network (VIC FAN) is challenging a public hearing where Langford's mayor verbally abused and intimidated residents opposed to the Bear Mountain Parkway and South Skirt Mountain Village development.

News reports from the hearing on February 23 show an angry Mayor Stew Young browbeating a retired schoolteacher, calling her remarks "negative" and telling her to "sit down." Other speakers were repeatedly interrupted and confronted by the mayor, who had earlier told reporters that he believes the development should be approved regardless of the public's objections.

VIC FAN has also learned that the city and the developers have failed to notify — let alone consult with — the Tsartlip First Nation, which claims SPAET (Skirt) Mountain as part of its traditional territory. For thousands of years, the mountain has been a shared site where families from the Esquimalt, Songhees, Tsartlip and other First Natons would gather for ceremonies and celebrations.

Now VIC FAN is demanding a new public hearing on the South Skirt Mountain development. A February 27 letter to Mayor Stew Young and Langford City Council spells out several violations of the Local Government Act, and warns that if Langford adopts the controversial Skirt Mountain rezoning bylaw, it could be quashed by the Supreme Court.

Read the whole story, with photos and video, at Thank you!

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