The Bylaw Enforcement Notice and Dispute Adjudication system provides a simple, fair and cost-effective method for dealing with straightforward bylaw violations. It is much less costly, complex and time-consuming than a system in which tickets can be disputed only by going to court. This system replaces provincial court with a provincially appointed adjudicator.
Gabriola, Galiano, Gambier, Mayne, North Pender, Salt Spring, and Thetis local trust areas have adopted the Bylaw Enforcement Notice system.
Under this system, Bylaw Violation Notices (BVN) can be issued after an investigation confirms that a bylaw contravention exists. Before a BVN is issued, offenders are usually offered an opportunity to comply. A BVN carries with it a monetary penalty. The main goal of bylaw enforcement in the Trust area is not to collect penalties; it is to encourage compliance with the community's bylaws.
People who wish to dispute a BVN can notify the Islands Trust by mail, in person or online. The BVN includes information on how to do this.
Under this system, an Islands Trust screening officer hears initial objections to BVNs. If the objection is found to be valid, the screening officer can cancel the BVN. The screening officer can also authorize a reduction in the penalty amount in return for compliance with the bylaw. This step is carried out through a Compliance Agreement and may include remedial actions.
If the screening officer finds that the BVN is valid, the disputant can request formal dispute adjudication. A date, time and location is set for the adjudication hearing. The disputant need not attend the hearing but must submit evidence and arguments in writing or arrange for a telephone conference call if they are not going to attend in person. Every effort will be made to locate a suitable meeting space including on the island where you live if there is one available. It does not occur in provincial court.
These formal disputes are adjudicated by the agency approved by the BC Provincial Government. At the hearing, evidence is presented and the adjudicator decides if a bylaw violation did or did not occur.
Please refer to the Bylaw Enforcement Notice & Dispute Adjudication System brochure for information regarding this system.
To dispute a bylaw violation notice online please use our online dispute adjudication form.