Rockwood Homeowners' Association
Published in Spring 2013 The Rockwood Times Newsletter
In January 2012, a Provincial mandate forcing all municipalities
to change their by-laws to allow secondary units “AKA” nanny or
in-law suites came into effect. In response, the City of Mississauga went to the people for their input in drafting a plan for by holding several meetings last year.
Attending residents voiced their concerns about non-resident
landlords, and the effect that this had on the neighbourhood. Absentee landlords basically neglected their properties and as a result the neighbourhood and market values were compromised. Armed with the feedback from those meetings, on February 25th, at a well attended meeting, the municipal planning and development committee rolled out their much awaited plan. The new bylaw could affect up to 30,000 homes, but as secondary units are currently illegal, there is no way to accurately predict the exact number of existing units. The committee obviously took note of community concerns and proposed that any dwelling with a secondary unit must be the principal residence of the owner, and that there be a mandatory parking space. Advocates of lower cost housing lauded the Provincial mandate, but according to Mayor McCallion, changes to make secondary units legal may backfire. She also voiced concerns about the cost of covering services from garbage removal to schools and warned that “this will affect your taxes.”
The mayor also said the province needs to listen to the municipalities on issues related to the units, such as by-law enforcement. Under existing legislation, enforcement staff can’t enter a home to check for a basement apartment unless the owner or occupant grants permission.“In my opinion, I think we better put the province on notice that unless they come through with the answers to (our) questions, we will delay the implementation,” said McCallion. “It’s okay for them to mandate us to do certain things but there comes a time when they have to comply with our requests.”
A supplementary report, including comments from the meeting, will be brought back to council for their approval at a later date.