The Comox Valley Regional District launched a new Bylaw Dispute Adjudication System (BDAS) Dec. 1. The new process will help manage bylaw disputes locally rather than through the Provincial Court system.
Residents can now follow a simple three step process after receiving a Bylaw Offence Notice.
Step 1: Pay or Dispute a Bylaw Notice
•Upon receipt, pay notice or dispute within 14 days to the CVRD;
•Dispute by filling out form on rear of notice and deliver in person to CVRD office (770 Harmston Ave.), email or fax 250-334-4358.
Step 2: Dispute Process
•If disputed, a screening officer will contact you to review details;
•Screening officer will either confirm or cancel the notice;
•If notice upheld, offered choice:
•Pay full amount of fine (not eligible to discounted amount);
•Enter into compliance agreement (when applicable);
•Request bylaw dispute adjudication hearing.
Step 3: Adjudication Hearing
•A dispute co-ordinator will contact you with date, time and location of hearing (either in person, phone/video, or in writing);
•An independent adjudicator will determine if the bylaw offence occurred or not;
•Offence did not occur, the notice will be cancelled;
•Offence occurred, the notice will stand and a $25 adjudication fee along with full fine amount will be required.
“The system has been created to provide local governments with the ability to make enforcement of bylaw matters more efficient and less expensive for both the members of the public and the local government,” said Amanda Yasinski, manager of bylaw compliance.