By Gagandeep Ghuman
Published: Feb 6, 2018
District of Squamish officials are asking the council to initiate legal action on a homeowner who had been illegally growing marijuana in a home in Brackendale.
DOS officials are asking the council to file a bylaw contravention notice on title and commence legal action on a property to bring the home owners into compliance with local bylaws.
It was in October last year that the district received a complaint about a marijuana growing operation in a home in Brackendale. A month later, the building inspectors visited the property and found evidence of a grow-op operation, although they were not allowed access to the home for further investigation.
When they returned with a notice to inspect, they found out that while there were no changes to the upper floor, the lower floor had been changed to grow marijuana.
“The lower floor appeared to have been converted from a residential occupancy to 2 rooms that are used for intensive production of plant material. There was also an addition to the lower floor with similar details that appears to be a third grow facility,” the inspectors noted in a report to the council.
The building inspectors found there had been “significant alterations” done to the interior as well as the exterior of the building, which included changes to structure, electrical and mechanical systems as well as occupancy class.
“The inspectors note that the occupancy classification is significant because as per BC Building Code regulations, not all occupancies can exist adjacent to each other without significant construction details to protect one from the other. This includes most notably, fire separations and environmental separation.” they told the council.
The officials found no evidence of any building permits on record for any of the alterations and it seemed like they had been made only recently. The staff are recommending a notice be placed on the land title of the property, a common method to bring a properly in compliance with local bylaws.
“Based on the nature of the non-compliance on this property, this case falls in the high risk category and staff believe this approach is the best short term solution to identify the life safety risk and reduce the liability to the community while we move towards compliance,” the staff informed the council.
The applicant has been notified of this council agenda as a requirement of Section 57 of the Community Charter and given the opportunity to speak to it if he or she so decides.