Saanich tickets mayoral candidate Shebib for tent-city camp

Saanich bylaw officers have issued a municipal ticket to retired junk dealer David Shebib after he invited 20 former Saanich tent city residents to camp on the rented property where he lives on West Saanich Road.

A municipal zoning bylaw prohibits living in a tent or RV on the property. A notice has been posted on his door at 5090 West Saanich Rd., warning him he could face fines of up to $115 a day.

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Shebib, who is running for mayor of Saanich, lives in a house on the property rented by his son. He invited the campers to stay on the property, saying no one else would take them in.

He did not, however, get approval from his son, Andrew McLean, who was on Salt Spring Island at the time, his landlord or the four other tenants subletting rooms in the home.

Camp leader Chrissy Brett said the campers have decided they will leave the property by Oct. 12, after meeting with landlord Sam Seera on Friday morning.

Brett and Seera have pledged to work together to help the campers find a more suitable place to go.

Seera, who owns the 1.4-acre rural property with Gurpal and Pavnit Aujla, had served his legal tenants, who live in the house on the property, a one-month eviction notice this week in order to get the campers to leave.

Brett said Seera will help the campers with some of the moving costs.

“He has reached out to the province to say it would make more sense to work with us and find some place for people to go — somewhere that isn’t a park with a playground, that isn’t a place that interrupts a lot of things. Find a place for people to go, because people belong somewhere,” said Brett.

B.C. Housing has offered the campers beds in a variety of shelters, but the campers want a 24-hour facility that will take them all and accommodate their various needs.

ldickson@timescolonist.com

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