THE NEWS/files                                Residents at camp have made their own latrine.

THE NEWS/files Residents at camp have made their own latrine.

Maple Ridge still in court to clear tent city

Two days set in Supreme Court to get order

Maple Ridge wants to find a way to resolve and remove the Anita Place Tent City, whether voluntarily or by court order.

Vancouver Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to schedule a two-day hearing on June 28 and 29 to allow both sides to argue their cases for the tent city, located on the site of a future neighbourhood park next to the Haney Bypass.

The city agreed this week to allow Porta-potties at the camp, while it works with the provincial government to address housing issues.

But working with provincial officials is difficult because there is, as yet, no government in Victoria, following the stalemate between the NDP and Liberals following the May 9 election.

“Part of it also has to do is the non-presence of an active government right now,” Coun. Bob Masse said Thursday.

A city news release on June 21 said that legal action is “paused” in order to address health and safety issues, and that the city intends to “continue to suspend the injunction lawsuit,” as long as camp conditions remain safe.

But Masse says legal action hasn’t been suspended.

“Not that I know of. The date is still set for next week.”

Circumstances may change in the next week, but for now the city will make its argument in court June 28-29 to get an order to clear the camp.

“I would say that we still want the camp gone.”

Mayor Nicole Read said discussions are ongoing to find a way an answer.

“We’re certainly exploring the best way to bring about resolution to this camp. We’re adjourned and we’ll have some discussion and we’ll see where it goes.

“But right now, the injunction is not off the table. We’re working … that’s what we’re doing.

“At the end of the day, there is an impact on the neighbourhood that the community is extremely mindful of,” Read said.

She also disagreed that if the camp remains in good order, the city will suspend its legal action.

“No, I don’t think that is the position of council.

“We’re in a really difficult position having no government.”

The city had served a notice of an application for an injunction in early June and it’s already been delayed twice in court.

Pivot Legal Society lawyers had collected 40 statements from residents and neighbours in support of the camp.