Editor, The News:
The District of Maple Ridge’s secondary suite bylaw stipulates that extra fees must be paid for water, sewer and recycling services, if a legalized secondary suite is located on the premises. The rationale for this is that a secondary suite will result in an increased used of these services.
It is an erroneous assumption, though, as there could be only one resident in the main dwelling and one in the suite for a total of two. On the other hand, a residence with no secondary suite could be the residence of a family of four of five, or more people.
If Maple Ridge is to charge fees for services according to usage, a better measuring stick would be the number of people residing in a specific dwelling, whether they do so in one or two separate units.
Next door in Pitt Meadows, a reduction in the same fees is offered to owners as an incentive to legalize their suites. The safety offered to residents by a properly legalized suite that meets the building code regulations seems to be of more importance than an opportunity for more money out of home owners to city politicians in Pitt Meadows than to those in Maple Ridge.