At its May 17 meeting, Courtenay council approved second reading of a bylaw amendment that would allow honeybees and hens to be kept outdoors throughout the city. The maximum number of hens is six per lot. Roosters are not permitted.
A public hearing will be held before third reading is considered.
A staff report says the City of Vancouver noted a decrease in complaints about backyard chickens after a program and bylaws were in place. In contrast, the Town of Qualicum Beach ended a recent pilot project for backyard hens, citing six to 10 complaints received since 2017 resulting from 17 backyard hen operations.
Council approved the final draft of a Dike Replacement and Flood Management Strategy, which was precipitated by a series of floods in the city. The most significant occurred in 2009, 2010 and 2014. The floods highlighted vulnerabilities related to dike infrastructure, and a changing climate. The city, in response, has been working on solutions. Council directed staff to develop a flood risk map, and to identify properties with an unacceptable flood risk. Regulatory and planning tools will be implemented to manage impacts of flooding in all areas.
Council gave final approval for construction of a 93-unit Holiday Inn Express at the corner of Hunt and Ryan roads, opposite of Chances Casino. The hotel will include an indoor swimming pool, fitness facility, meeting room and breakfast bar. There will be 97 parking stalls and up to 10 electric vehicle charging stations.