The Week: buzzing about city annexation (don’t bet on it) and 3L logging (yeah, probably)

The Week: buzzing about city annexation (don’t bet on it) and 3L logging (yeah, probably)

Who needs a Mexican beach in January, it’s almost as warm here (not)  |  George Le Masurier photo

The Week: buzzing about city annexation (don’t bet on it) and 3L logging (yeah, probably)


There was a lot of buzz last week about 3L Developments on-going attempt to subvert the Regional Growth Strategy in order to build 780 new houses in the Puntledge Triangle. But 3L itself generated only some of that buzz.

A group of 12 people called the Save Stotan Falls Committee triggered most of the chatter. It sprung from a full-page “advertorial” they placed in the Comox Valley Record that suggested a forward-thinking Courtenay Council would annex 3L’s property into the city. This would save millions of dollars. Increased tax revenue for Courtenay. Free land for K’omoks First Nation. Save Stotan Falls. Preserve forests.

They stopped only slightly short of guaranteeing world peace.

But the group did not mention that 3L has recently hinted at dedicating a large chunk of their land to a future convention centre — disguised as an agriplex, whatever that really means. Or that certain members of the anonymous group have promoted the centre as their personal legacy to the Comox Valley.

It’s possible that two separate purposes have aligned: If 3L gets annexed, then the good old boys get some land for their convention centre. And both are using the preservation of easy access to Stotan Falls as cover for their true intentions.

To make the scheme work, they have practically exalted the swimming hole to sacred status. It’s become a shine that commands reverence to which all else should be sacrificed. No matter that maybe five percent of the local population goes there in any given year.

So the ad created some buzz. There were rumours of a counter-petition and possibly another ad refuting the Save Stotan Falls Committee ad.

But this is all wild-eyed speculation because annexation is off the table for now.

3L Developments has not applied to the city for annexation. It would have been rejected if they had. City planners are not accepting applications for annexation at least until the current Official Community Plan review winds up.

And when the city finally formalizes a new OCP sometime next year, the smart money will bet against annexation under its new terms.

Now, the other buzz last week was about 3L sending a letter to property owners adjacent to their land. The letters said that unless the regional district reached a deal with the company to purchase the land by Jan. 21, 3L would start cutting down trees.

Reaching a multi-million dollar purchase agreement takes time. And when you’re dealing with a government that is slow-moving by nature, the two- or three-week deadline was a fantasy. More likely a PR tactic.

The company may well follow through and do some perimeter logging in a week or so, but that doesn’t preclude any eventual purchase agreement.

The letters, the full-page ad and the petition flashed brightly for a few days. But we’re back to reality now.

Sometime next week, the Comox Valley Regional District board will gather with a special mediator and listen to Comox directors complain about how they don’t like what’s happening to the Economic Development Society (EDS).

After a similar session last fall failed to pull directors into a common vision for the society’s future role, the Town of Comox asked for a formal service review. This is a legislated process to air grievances and seek resolutions. It’s also a required step before a participant such as the town can pull out of the service.

There’s no telling how long the service review might take. During the October session, it became clear that the Comox and Area C directors had one view and the rest of the board had another. There appeared to be little common ground.

Courtenay and Area A and B directors take a broader view of what constitutes economic development. For example, they see that providing affordable housing and accessible child care helps businesses attract and retain employees.

They realize that helping small local businesses create effective and competitive online sales platforms will sustain them beyond the pandemic. They believe that maintaining and expanding mountain bike infrastructure benefits businesses across the whole community.

Comox resists these new efforts. They want the EDS to help them fund a marina expansion and keep throwing the Seafood Festival party.

It may even be more personal than that. Everyone but the Comox directors think the town has benefited from EDS activities more than everyone else and to an extent that is out of proportion to their financial investment. If the EDS moves in the direction preferred by the board majority, Comox will no longer be the centre of attention.

So, it’s possible that at the end of the service review Comox will pick up its marbles and go home. Comox might choose to follow Cumberland’s lead and set up its own Economic Development office.

In our opinion, that wouldn’t be a bad thing. If each municipality had its own economic development officer and the electoral areas had their own at the regional district, they could all focus precisely on what each area needs and wants. Once a month, the four ED officers could all get together to explore ways of working together.

Or, maybe the directors will find common ground during next week’s service review. But don’t bet on it.



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CVRD starts the process to create a regional parks service, it could take until 2022

CVRD starts the process to create a regional parks service, it could take until 2022

Graham Hilliar and Jen Alton examining trees tagged for logging in the Bevan Trails Recreation Area  |  George Le Masurier photo

CVRD starts the process to create a regional parks service, it could take until 2022


With the possibility of losing several important large parcels of recreational land to logging, the Comox Valley Regional District this week moved a step closer to establishing a regional park service.

During its Dec. 15 meeting, regional directors voted to start what could be a lengthy process to create a regional parks service.

They directed staff to undertake a $25,000 background study and report back to the board.

A regional parks service that is funded by the entire Comox Valley would create the increased capacity to purchase large parcels of land, such as the 3L Developments Inc. property near Stotan Falls and the Bevan Trails Recreation Area higher up on the Puntledge River.

The only active parks service in existence now applies exclusively to the rural electoral areas and is funded by residents of those areas.

The vote occurred after directors heard a presentation from CVRD Parks Manager Mark Harrison on the history of parks services, the difference between regional and community parks and the benefits of creating a regional parks service.

In 1971, the then-Comox Strathcona Regional District developed a regional parks service that was funded in both 1972 and 1975, but the money was ultimately redistributed to the participating municipalities because directors could not agree on which parks to fund. The bylaw became dormant.

Harrison’s presentation offered the board several options for reactivating.

The first option would undertake a background study to include input from municipalities and the K’omoks First Nation, It would review best practices, funding models, examine local parks and greenway plans and more.

It’s a process that staff indicated could take until 2022 to re-activate the dormant parks service bylaw.

But several directors did not want to wait that long.

They preferred a second option to convert the dormant service into an active bylaw first and then engage the municipalities and KFN later. That would have enabled the regional district to start funding and possibly pursuing parkland more quickly.

“It (a regional parks service) is long overdue and the time is now,” Area C Electoral Director Edwin Grieve said. He urged directors to take a leadership role.

Area A Director Daniel Arbour agreed. “We’ve had 50 years to think about this,” he said.

But the rest of the directors voted to accept the staff recommendation with an understanding that it be completed as soon as possible.



Parks Manager Harrison told the board that the pandemic has shown the importance of natural areas for mental and physical health and social engagement. But, he said, it has also revealed the deficiencies in the existing parks service.

One of the deficiencies is a lack of clarity over what constitutes a community park versus a regional park service.

A community park service, he said, primarily benefits the rural areas that exclusively fund and operate them. A regional service benefits the whole region and is funded by all taxpayers in the Comox Valley.

Harrison said if the regional district chooses to collaborate and reactive a regional parks service it could accomplish many goals.

He said regional parks could consist of trails that connect our core communities. It could protect natural assets in perpetuity and make it possible to acquire large parcels of land that in the Comox Valley are often held privately.

A regional parks service could help combat climate change, enhance tourism. It would protect traditional recreation lands and the integrity of watersheds.

“These are all really good and just goals,” he said.

Harrison pointed to successes by other Vancouver Island regional districts that already have regional parks services. He noted the Englishman River park that includes a conservation area. The Elk and Beaver lakes areas in the Capital Regional District and the Galloping Goose and Lochside Trails.

In the Cowichan area, the regional district has protected swimming pools along the Cowichan River and created an extensive trail system for hiking, biking and horseback riding.

“It takes cooperation from a whole community to achieve some of these types of parks that are regionally significant and benefit the region as a whole,” he said.



The 26 organizations of the Comox Valley Conservation Partnership and their thousands of individual members have encouraged the regional district to activate a regional parks service.

Speaking to the board on behalf of the partnership, Tim Ennis, the executive director of the Comox Valley Lands Trust offered to collaborate with the regional district because “we can achieve more together.”

He noted the Lands Trust and the regional district have worked successfully together in the past on projects like the Tsolum River Commons and the Morrison Creek Conservation Area. In the latter project, the regional district provided a third of the funding and the Lands Trust secured the remainder from sources within and outside the local community.

“A regional park service could expand our capabilities,” he said.

Ennis noted that there are several front-burner conservation opportunities before the community currently that could only be accomplished through collaboration. He said CVCP members have extensive experience and that they were available to help.



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Comox Valley local government elections ramping up for Oct. 15 vote

Comox Valley voters will elect new councilors, mayors, regional district representatives, school board members and Island Trust reps on Oct. 15. Find out who’s running for what … and why. Decafnation returns to shine more light on local government issues and candidates

The Week: Does the Comox Valley need a regional park service … and quickly?

The Week: Does the Comox Valley need a regional park service … and quickly?

Low-lying fog on the Puntledge River seen from the popular Bevan Swing swimming area  |  George Le Masurier photo

The Week: Does the Comox Valley need a regional park service … and quickly?


This week we’re talking about regional parks and zeroing in on what 3L Developments Inc. actually paid for their Puntledge Triangle land. We’re being curious about an interesting twist in the school trustee by-election on Saturday and a missed opportunity for the Town of Comox. And what happened to Ronna-Rae Leonard?

Meanwhile, it’s opening weekend up at Mt. Washington.


Does the Comox Valley need a regional parks service? Given all the recent attention to popular recreation areas along both sides of the Puntledge River, it seems that we do. And it’s probably inevitable.

We reported this week on a new society that hopes to save the Bevan Trails area from imminent logging by Hancock Forest Management. There’s also a public interest in preserving the current state of the Puntledge Triangle and its access to Stotan Falls.

These two areas — both located in Electoral Area C — certainly warrant public acquisition. The Puntledge River runs through the heart of the Comox Valley and we already have several parks along the river’s lower reaches.

But here’s the problem: There is no Comox Valley regional park service. So it’s currently up to rural taxpayers to fund the purchase of any land for parks in Electoral Areas A, B or C. Because the three Comox Valley municipalities do not contribute to the rural parks fund, its funds are limited.

Other regional districts on the Island have regional park services. For example, consider this language from the Regional District of Nanaimo:

“A regional park function was established in the RDN in 1989. In 1995, the Regional Board adopted a Parks System Plan to guide the development of Regional Parks. The vision back then was of a park system that “secures, protects and stewards lands within the Region that maintain livability, provide environmental and natural resource protection and accommodate outdoor recreational pursuits”.

“Then, in 1998, the Board approved a plan for acquiring up to nine regional park sites over the next seven years. The sites were intended to serve a variety of outdoor activities, and protect a range of habitats and natural features.”

A regional park function makes sense for us, too. And we might already have one.

Area C Director Edwin Grieve believes the Comox Valley Regional District has an inactive regional park service bylaw. He told Decafnation this week that regional directors adopted a bylaw in the 1990s but it lapsed because they couldn’t decide which projects to fund. The bylaw could be re-activated because the regional board has never rescinded it.

Regional district staff plan to present a report on this topic at the board’s Dec. 15 meeting.

It’s fair to say that those people living in the densest and highest populated areas of our community are just as likely — some would argue more likely — to use parks and other recreational sites in our rural areas. Shouldn’t they contribute to the purchase and maintenance of regional parks?

Of course, this is going to spark a whole new community conversation. But it’s one we must have if we’re going to consider preserving large areas like the Puntledge Triangle or Bevan Trails.

Is it possible for local governments to make all of this happen in time to preserve either of the areas currently on the chopping block? Stay tuned.


Speaking of 3L Developments Inc., In last week’s commentary, we speculated that the company had paid around $1.5 million for the four parcels comprising their proposed Riverwood subdivision. We were wrong.

According to new information from two separate sources, tax records show the company paid almost $3.7 million. The sales mostly occurred in 2006. One of the parcels shows a sale as late as 2012 but that could be the result of an internal transfer of titles, according to one source.

BC Assessment records show the properties were valued for tax purposes at $4.646 million in 2019 and at $4.222 million in 2020, a drop of $424,000.


There’s an interesting twist to Dec. 12’s general voting in the Area C school trustee by-election.

When voters go to the polls on Saturday, Dec. 12 they might not recognize the name of one candidate: Cristi May.

Cristi May-Sacht is definitely among the six candidates seeking election. But not Cristi May.

According to our source, May-Sacht was told her name was too long to fit on the physical ballot so it was shortened. That’s a curious decision.

What happens if May-Sacht falls just a few votes short of winning? Could she demand a new election with her proper name on the ballot?


The Town of Comox has missed an excellent opportunity to resolve their Mack Laing Trust problem; specifically, what to do with the famous ornithologist’s heritage home, called Shakesides.

The BC Government has set aside $90 million to provide fully-funded $1 million grants for local government projects that support economic resilience during the pandemic. The idea is to create immediate job opportunities for those negatively impacted by COVID public health orders. Eligible projects have to begin by the end of next year and complete within two years.

The government specified four key categories of shovel-ready projects that would qualify. One of those is Unique Heritage Infrastructure.

Restoring Shakesides in accordance with the Laing Trust agreement would have surely qualified. There’s already a comprehensive business plan for the project and more than 30 volunteer skilled craftspeople and businesses, including Lacasse Construction, are ready to go.

But the only application submitted by the town was to construct a new marine services building on the waterfront.

The town needs to deal with its failure to resolve this outstanding issue. Two years ago, the Town Council couldn’t get back to the BC Supreme Court fast enough for a ruling on their petition to vary the trust agreement and demolish Shakesides. Now they’re doing nothing.

Why? Probably because a few early Supreme Court orders went against them. A Justice ruled that the Mack Laing Heritage Society could participate in the court hearings and present their mountain of evidence, some of which looks very bad for the town.

So, after spending nearly $300,000 of your tax money on legal fees, the town realized there was a high probability the court would deny their application. The court could also order an independent financial audit of how the town handled the financial aspects of the Mack Laing Trust agreement.

No surprise then that the Town Council is avoiding a trip back to court.

That’s what makes this missed opportunity so sad. A $1 million grant from the province to fund a Shakesides restoration project along with the Heritage Society’s volunteers might have made this 38-year-old lingering problem go away. And it could have healed a few community wounds.


Courtenay-Comox voters might have noticed an interesting change in Premier John Horgan’s new government. Absent from the list is MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard.

She lost her position as the government’s Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors’ Services and Long-Term Care to Mable Elmore, an 11-year MLA for Vancouver-Kensington. No reason was given for the change.

This article was updated to correct the general voting date to Saturday, Dec. 12.



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The Week: Strong CV women in charge.  What did 3L pay? Plus, CVEDS bungles, Comox raises

The Week: Strong CV women in charge. What did 3L pay? Plus, CVEDS bungles, Comox raises

“You realize that our mistrust of the future makes it hard to give up the past.” — Chuck Palahniuk, Survivor  |  George Le Masurier photo

The Week: Strong CV women in charge. What did 3L pay? Plus, CVEDS bungles, Comox raises


This week we’re all about 3L Developments (again), more head-shaking activity from the CV Economic Development Society (again) and ditto (again) for the Comox Town Council.

But first, let’s congratulate Jesse Ketler and Arzeena Hamir on their re-election as chair and co-chair of the Comox Valley Regional District board. Two strong women at the helm. We’re in good hands.

And kudos to another strong woman who joined the CVRD board this week. Courtenay Councillor Melanie McCollum replaced David Frisch as one of the city’s four regional directors.


Decafnation has received information that back in 2007, 3L Developments Inc. might have paid somewhere around $1.5 million to purchase the four parcels of land totalling nearly 500 acres in what’s being called the Puntledge Triangle.

We have not verified that number, nor have we seen any official documents that list the 2007 sale price.

But for the last 13 years, the company has tried to persuade the regional district to abandon its Regional Growth Strategy and rezone the properties for a dense urban-style subdivision.

Those four parcels today have an assessed value of $4.222 million. We got those numbers directly from the BC Assessment website.

If the sale price is even close to accurate, then 3L has enjoyed a significant increase in value. Of course, it’s nothing near the profit the company would have realized if the regional district had approved a rezoning.

Did 3L ever really plan to develop the property itself? Or, was its end-plan only to get the parcels rezoned, which would have made the land much more valuable, and then flip the parcels to some other developer?

We’ll never know.

Instead, the debate now shifts to whether the regional district should attempt to purchase the property from 3L Developments. Buying the property for parkland and securing public access to Stotan Falls would certainly win popularity points with the general public. But taking on more parkland is expensive.

There’s no indication yet that regional directors have any interest in negotiating a purchase.

And who knows how they feel after hearing company spokesperson Rob Buchan’s sales pitch to them this week. Buchan said 3L prefers to sell the land to the regional district. But, if you don’t buy the property, he intimated the company would clear-cut the trees and turn the site into a gravel pit. We’ll turn your jewel into a blight.

Not exactly a feel-good proposition.

But the company is certainly entitled to do those things. And if their only interest is self-interest, then that’s probably what will happen.


Does the CV Economic Development Society need to fold its tent? Representatives of the three electoral areas, Courtenay, Comox and the regional district will start seeking an answer to that question on Jan. 19.

Regional directors had planned for the full board to assess the future of CVEDS over the next year. But the Comox Town Council decided unanimously to derail that plan and trigger a quicker statutory service review.

What’s the difference? First, a smaller group will negotiate whether there’s any common ground to save the 32-year-old society; and, second, if Comox doesn’t like the outcome of the review, then they can officially withdraw from the service.

Given the Economic Development Society’s recent missteps, the outcome may already be a foregone conclusion. The directors from Courtenay and Electoral Areas A and B are not happy. While the directors from Comox and Area C would preserve the society in its present form if they could. That’s a 3-2 straight-up vote.

And CVEDS has not helped its chances for survival recently. Consider that:

1) CVEDS staff planned a three-day seafood festival during the second pandemic wave in November without the knowledge of its own board of directors or the CVRD or the Comox Valley Regional District. The North Island Public Health department had to step in and when hoteliers got uncomfortable, the event was shut down.

Bringing in guests and featured chefs from the Lower Mainland and Ontario had the potential to create a COVID super-spreader event.

2) The society’s board of directors have not seen or approved any financial statements for 11 months. This not only contravenes the Societies Act, but it’s also an affront to Comox Valley taxpayers who fund the organization.

3) The society has not held an Annual General Meeting for 17 months. Again, in conflict with the Societies Act.

4) CVEDS signed a new two-year contract with the regional district in late July, and then quickly forgot most of it. The society is already in contravention of the agreement and has missed several contractual deadlines.

And then there’s this:

5) On March 12, the local hotels and assorted other accommodation facilities that voluntarily contribute funds to the Municipal and Regional District Tax program (MRDT) — often called the “hotel tax” — decided at their annual budget meeting to help fund mountain biking in Cumberland.

The MRDT group voted to donate $10,000 per year for three years to support the United Riders of Cumberland (UROC) that maintains the biking trails in the Cumberland Forest and organizes events.

The hoteliers also agreed to donate an additional $5,000 per year for three years as prize money for those events to increase participation and potential overnight stays in the Valley.

But several months later, UROC hadn’t received any money. After Cumberland Mayor Leslie Baird phoned some of the hoteliers about the funds it was discovered that CVEDS staff had apparently and unilaterally decided to withdraw the donations.

This infuriated the hoteliers because, well, it’s their money and they get to decide how to spend it.

Does this sound like a well-run organization, one that deserves to continue receiving more than a million dollars a year of local taxpayers’ money?

If you have strong feelings about that one way or the other, you might want to let your representative in Comox, Courtenay or the three electoral areas know before Jan. 19.


Finally, this week, the Comox town councillors think they might be underpaid.

At its Nov. 18 meeting, the council voted to undertake a review of remuneration for the mayor and council. Keep in mind that one of the first things this council did after taking office in 2018 was to vote themselves a 14 percent pay increase.

We’re in the middle of a pandemic. People have lost jobs. Businesses have closed or lost significant profitability. If this second wave of COVID infections continues to surge, the province might impose even more negative economic impacts.

It’s possible this council might be tone-deaf.

But it is true that Comox council salaries are a little below the average of comparable municipalities. Of course, chasing the average just raises the average. You never get there. It’s like a dog chasing its tail.

That said, however, we have no argument with compensating elected officials fairly. The good ones put in long hours.

Maybe it’s just the optics that feel wrong about this. Comox councillors obviously want to raise their salaries early next year because municipal elections loom the following year. And from a political perspective, it’s better if voters forget about two wage hikes during one term in office before the polls open in 2022.

The citizens advisory group that will study and recommend whether Comox councillors deserve a second raise will comprise just three people, including one former councillor. We think a larger, more representative group of Comox taxpayers might be more objective.

And who will choose and appoint this (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) neutral group? Why the town’s chief administrative officer, of course, who is employed at the pleasure of the mayor and council.



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3L Developments prefers to sell Riverwood land but vows to log it and extract gravel

3L Developments prefers to sell Riverwood land but vows to log it and extract gravel

Archive promotional image from 3L Developments Inc.

3L Developments prefers to sell Riverwood land but vows to log it and extract gravel


The current spokesperson for the 3L Developments Inc. company told the Comox Valley Regional District today that “the future of the lands” is in their hands.

The spokesperson, Rob Buchan, said the company will proceed to log the property and open it up to a gravel extraction operation unless the regional district purchases the property.

The four parcels of the property have a 2020 assessed value of $4.222 million.

Buchan referred to the nearly 500 acres of land in the Puntledge Triangle — four large parcels between the Puntledge and Browns rivers — that 3L wants to subdivide into 799 housing units.

Last week, the Electoral Areas Services Commission (EASC) of the regional district rejected the company’s request to amend the Regional Growth Strategy and rezone the property for a dense subdivision. Under current zoning, the company can only subdivide 50-acre parcels. 

The EASC took their vote again in front of the full regional district board today and confirmed their rejection of 3L’s application to amend the RGS and also to direct staff to work with the company to restore public access to Stotan Falls.

Area C Director Edwin Grieve changed his vote. At last week’s EASC meeting, he voted against a motion to reject the 3L application. At today’s full board meeting, he voted in favour of rejecting 3L.

“The owner (David Dutcyvich) would prefer that the CVRD buy the lands,” Buchan said. But added that the company would proceed to the best use of the property under current zoning, which is to log and extract gravel.

No purchase price was mentioned.

Comox Director Ken Grant asked Buchan if some “middle ground” was possible.

“I’d like to say yes,” Buchan said. “But export log prices are at an all-time high, so there’s a small amount of time.”

Area C Director Edwin Grieve asked if the company had approached the City of Courtenay about annexing a portion of the property where they could develop a subdivision.

“Yes, we approached Courtenay about nine months ago,” Buchan said. “There was no appetite for annexation at the time. It’s unfortunate.”

Courtenay Director Wendy Morin wondered if there were enough high-quality gravel and timber on the land to justify logging, especially because of the riparian zones required along the river.

Buchan said he believed there was a “considerable sum of fir and cedar” trees to log and that the company had an offer from a gravel operator to buy the property earlier this year.

Morin said she was skeptical about the volume of resources and questioned whether Buchan’s information was accurate.

Regional directors also agreed to hear a presentation from Kathleen Pitt, who spoke before Buchan. She said there were only three options for the regional district: Rezone it (“in a perfect world”), buy it or stand by and watch it logged.

By not rezoning or buying the land, she said directors were “choosing” to have it logged and mined for gravel.

Courtenay Director Doug Hillian asked if Pitt was a Comox Valley resident because she gave no information about herself. But Pitt declined to answer any questions from directors.



If the Comox Valley Regional District pursued the purchase of the land, what price would they pay?

3L Developments has never floated a purchase price publicly and Decafnation has not been able to find public records of the price the company paid for the land in 2007.

But the assessed value of the property is public knowledge.

According to the BC Assessment office, the total 2020 assessed value of the four properties owned by 3L Developments that comprise the proposed Riverwood subdivision is $4,222,000. That represents a decline over 2019 assessed values by about $424,000.

The smallest of the four properties was the only one to increase in value while the three largest all dropped between five and 16 percent.

The largest 185-acre parcel (PID: 028-915-194) dropped from $1.642 million to $1.375 million or about 16 percent, roughly $267,000.

A 158 acre parcel (PID: 000-866-814) went down from $1.613 million to $1.411 million or about 12 percent, roughly $202,000.

The 118 acre parcel (PID: 003-922-308) fell from $563,000 to $534,000 or about five percent and roughly $29,000.

The smallest parcel of 33 acres (PID: 000-866-792) increased in assessed value from $828,000 in 2019 to $902,000 in 2020, about a nine percent jump or roughly $74,000.

There was no information on the BC Assessment website about how much 3L Developments Inc. paid for the four parcels in 2007. The website only shows last sale price information if the properties were sold within the previous three years.

This article has been updated Nov. 25 to clarify that only Electoral Areas Services Commission members voted on the 3L application and that Director Grieve changed his vote to support rejection.



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Comox Valley local government elections ramping up for Oct. 15 vote

Comox Valley voters will elect new councilors, mayors, regional district representatives, school board members and Island Trust reps on Oct. 15. Find out who’s running for what … and why. Decafnation returns to shine more light on local government issues and candidates