Lawsuit: Allegations of Nuisance
In June 2017, the Sahtlam Neighbourhood Association, along with six residents of Sahtlam, filed a Notice of Civil Claim with the BC Supreme Courts alleging that the Vancouver Island Motorsport Circuit (VIMC) was in violation of provincial Nuisance Law that prohibits noise (or other environmental contaminants) that disrupts the "peaceful use and enjoyment of private property". The plaintiffs allege that intrusive noise from race cars driving around the track at VIMC is invading their homes and yards, and appeals to the BC Assessment Authority have resulted in devalued properties due to their proximity to the racetrack.
The lawsuit was filed after talks with VIMC, hosted by Mayor Jon Lefebure of the Municipality of North Cowichan, broke down when VIMC refused to discuss lowering their self-imposed noise limits for vehicles using the track. The municipality claimed it had no legal mechanism with which to impose or enforce noise limits on VIMC; thus, residents were left with no recourse other than the court system.
The original Notice of Civil Claim asked the courts to rule not only on the Nuisance aspect of the case, but to also examine North Cowichan zoning bylaws and determine whether VIMC was operating in violation of those bylaws by way of a Declaration. Although the request for a Declaration was later ordered removed from the Notice of Civil Claim, the question of permitted use remains part of the Nuisance claim (click here for more details).
The trial date is set for October 2019.