Lacombe County is holding off on new bylaw changes to prevent the overdevelopment of RV resorts to get further information from staff.
At a public hearing in council chambers on Thursday, Sunbreaker Cove Mayor Gib Clark questioned the way residents were notified of the bylaw changes. Shortcomings in the way notice was given amounts to a “breach of the rules of procedure,” he said.
Clark also criticized the bylaw for not mentioning anywhere that RV resorts are meant to be for seasonal use only. If the condominium association allows people to live in the resort all year, “then what remedy do you have?”
Changes to the RV zoning in the bylaw ban basements; put new limits on the size and height of accessory buildings, such as sheds on RV lots; limit RV lots to one accessory building; and reduce the amount of the site that can be covered by RVs and other buildings.
Gull Lake resident Margaret Glasford said she was concerned that the bylaw’s failure to prohibit locating lots in flood plains puts environmentally important riparian areas at risk. Riparian areas around the lake protect shorelines from erosion, help recharge and filter water and act as important buffers.
“If you disrupt those, those functions are no longer taking place and the lake is impacted,” she said.
Another Gull Lake resident said that setbacks and other development requirements for RV resorts should be consistent with the standards for cottage lots.
Developer Glenn Fraser, who is working on the 500-lot DeGraff’s Builtgreen Resort on Sylvan Lake, said that RV resort districts are becoming common in other counties.
He called Lacombe County’s proposed amendments as a “good middle ground.”
County commissioner Terry Hager said council decided not to go ahead with second and third readings of the amendments to allow staff to bring back a report on some of the issues raised during the public hearing, including the notification procedures.
Hager said he was confident the county had met all its requirements.