Council in the RM of Hanover is doubling – or quadrupling – down on their initial fine of $5,000 to a business that didn’t acquire proper permits before beginning construction on a shop in the area.
The initial fine to Eagle Dale Pullet Farms Ltd. came on April 7 at a meeting of council where the property owner, Barry Bueckert, was found to not have the proper building permit for the structure on March 17. He told council he was under the impression his contractor had the proper documentation for the 16,000-sq-ft. shop.
Construction was partially underway before the municipality’s bylaw enforcement officer, Stuart Penner, found the owner to not be complying and issued a stop work order.
After the initial fine was handed down to Bueckert, members of council and Penner found the work to be continuing on the structure, according to Hanover Planning Manager Jeremy Neufeld.
"First thing in the morning crews were not present and the rafters were half up and the stop work order had been removed from the building. Then when [Penner] came back from the office after writing up a new order the rafters were fully on," Neufeld said to council of the activity.
According to Neufeld, work was seen to be happening on April 8, 9, and 10 despite multiple stop work orders being issued.
Coun. John Giesbrecht (Ward 4) mentioned he drove by and noticed work happening on site after an order came down on the owner. Bueckert was told to secure the building on April 9 before ceasing construction as to not create a safety hazard, but by the next day more work had been completed on the shop.
Neufeld said since work continued for three consecutive days after the initial $5,000 fine, each day the site remains in non-compliance would be considered a separate offence.
In addition to the four separate fines, the property owner must pay the fee to obtain the building permit. For Buecker’s permit, that would amount to $1,470, or one percent of the shop’s declared value.
If the fines are not paid within 30 days of the notice, the RM could pursue legal action on the property owner.
- with files from Jordan Ross