City of Langley Council gave final reading to an updated Waterworks Regulation Bylaw. You can read more about this on a previous blog post. Council also gave final reading to amend our Officer Establishment Bylaw. This amended bylaw now allows the CAO, Director of Development Services and Economic Development, and the Director of Engineering, Parks and Environment to have signing authority for the City.
Over the last little while, there has been a large increase in the number of thrift stores in the community. This has caused some concern to people, and resulted in a letter from the Downtown Langley BIA requesting that council consider regulating the number of thrift stores in the community. There has also been concern about donation drop boxes as they can become unsightly with debris and items left around them.
To address these concerns, City of Langley staff developed three bylaw amendments for council to consider.
The first bylaw amendment would prevent new thrift stores from being opened with 400 meters of any other thrift store. All current thrift stores would be allowed to operate as per BC law. Council gave first and second reading to this bylaw amendment. The bylaw amendment would also prevent any new donation drop boxes from being placed in the City. Councillor van den Broek and Councillor Storteboom did not vote in favour of giving first and second reading. Some of their concerns were that businesses should be treated equally, and that council shouldn’t be getting so prescriptive with business regulations. I understanding their perspectives. For example, the City has a lot of sushi restaurants. Should we regulate the number of sushi restaurants too? I believe that Council needs to carefully consider all bylaws that place restrictions on what types of businesses we allow, or don't, in our community.
This proposed bylaw change will be heading to a public hearing to get input from the community.
Council also gave first, second, and third reading to a proposed amendment to our Business License and Regulation Bylaw. This amendment would require thrift stores that receive goods to have a person attending the donation acceptance area at all time when donated items can be dropped off, place clear signs around the donation acceptance area noting when items can be dropped off, and require a daily cleanup of the area expect for Sundays and holidays.
Council gave first, second, and third reading to amend our Fees and Charges Bylaw for existing donation drop boxes in the community. The City would require a $173 fee, plus an additional $100 for each donation drop box that is on private property.
Council approved a staff recommendation to award the tender of the 203rd Street project to Eurovia.
Over the last year, there has been an increase in violence around the world towards people who are sexual and visual minorities. Talking with some other members of council, we wanted to find a way to show that Langley City acknowledges and respects all people in our community. On Monday, I put forward a notice of motion that the City of Langley fly a rainbow flag one week during the summer to show that we are a community that accepts people no matter their colour, race, region, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or mental or physical disability.