Town Administration to enhance public engagement on Direct Control District matters

by Colin Smith

Morinville residents will have greater opportunities to have their say on community planning following a decision by Town Council.

At its March 12 meeting Council directed the Administration to bring forward amendments to the town’s land use bylaw referring to Direct Control Districts.
The amendments being sought would strengthen current public notification requirements, including non-statutory public hearings.

The issue was raised by Councillor Stephen Dafoe at the November 27, 2018 council meeting, where he moved that “Administration look into having an enhanced public engagement process when Council is required to be the Development Authority in a Direct Control District.”

The motion was referred to the February 19 Committee of the Whole meeting for discussion, then referred to the February 26 regular meeting, with discussion rescheduled to March 12.

Councillor Nicole Boutestein moved Administrations recommendation “That Council direct Administration to bring forward amendments to the Land Use Bylaw 3/2012 Direct Control Districts that exceed the current public notification requirements, such as, but not limited to, increased notification requirements and non-statutory public hearing.”
The motion passed 6-0.

The purpose of Direct Control Districts is to allow for more flexibility and control of development than is provided by conventional Land Use Districts. The Land Use bylaw sets out several types: DC-1, Direct Control – General; DC-2, Direct Control – Specific; DC-3, Direct Control – Site-Specific; DC-4, Direct Control – Site Specific, DC-C, Direct Control – Coeur de Morinville Residential; and DC-T, Direct Control –

Decisions on development are in some case made directly by Council, and in others are delegated to the Municipal Planning Commission or development officer.

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