Williams Lake passes Good Neighbour Bylaw

New bylaw consolidates existing bylaws into one comprehensive guideline outlining the responsibilities of homeowners.

Williams Lake Tribune

Council has adopted the Good Neighbour Bylaw, which consolidates a number of existing bylaws into one comprehensive guideline outlining the responsibilities of homeowners.

The Good Neighbour Bylaw, which council approved at its Tuesday, Sept. 2 meeting, is intended to protect and improve the quality of life of its residents, promote civic responsibility, and encourage good relationships between neighbours.

The bylaw incorporates four main categories: Street Nuisances, Noise Control, Property Maintenance, and Vacant Buildings. While most of the Good Neighbour Bylaw contains existing regulations, there are some changes from existing bylaws.

Examples include:

Property Maintenance

New regulations would require residents to: Ensure no more than one unlicensed vehicle and no more than one recreation vehicle are on a property, depending on lot size. Clear sidewalks of snow within 24 hours of a snow event. Keep properties clear of flyers and other debris. Ensure compost sites are enclosed, or that a compost pile is not within three metres of another property.

Street Nuisances

New regulations on panhandling, loud unruly noise, and fighting or loitering on city streets will give the RCMP additional tools to address these issues in a more informal manner, without the need to devote time and resources to a court process.

Noise Control

The restriction on noise will remain in effect from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. Monday to Friday. Noise restrictions will be in effect from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. on weekends and holidays.

Construction for gain on Sunday would be allowed between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m.

Vacant Buildings

Regulations would address vacant buildings that are dilapidated, dangerous, improperly secured, subject of public complaints, and that have been vacant more than 60 days.

Every owner of property that contains a vacant building must maintain $2 million in liability insurance and obtain a Vacant Building Registration Permit, and maintain the building in compliance with bylaw standards.

Residential permits are valid for one year. Commercial permits are valid for two years.

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