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CALUC Best Practices Best for BC

At a meeting of the CRD’s Housing Action Team, a rep from the Downtown Residents Association presented the Terms of Reference and Best Practices for Community Association Land Use Committees (CALUC), expected by the City of Victoria during the development application process.

 Membership Best Practice:

“Anyone who is interested in their neighbourhood and who is looking beyond their own self interest is encouraged to join the CALUC.”

“It would be useful to have people with experience reading plans (e.g. architects, developers, and builders).”

 Conflict of Interest:

“…a member of a CALUC will step down…” if  

  • The CALUC member lives, works or owns property within 22 metres of the land use application.
  • You, a family member or a friend are the proponent of the land use application.
  • You, a family member or a friend have a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in the land use application.
  • There is an appearance of bias.”

Good development is a critical part of housing affordability, jobs, and the health of our communities. The development review process must be objective, transparent and credible.

Presently, the City of Victoria has no enforcement tools to ensure CALUC Best Practices are carried out.

However, mandatory Terms of Reference and Best Practices, accompanied by clear enforcement mechanisms, would be an opportunity to raise the standard of development discourse in municipalities.

The provincial govt and Union of BC Municipalities should consider supporting similar standards as a necessary requirement for development reviews in BC’s communities.

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This column appears Wednesdays in the Times Colonist newspaper.

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