Mission says sorry, refunds 15 homeowners

The District of Mission is apologizing to 15 property owners after a review found there was insufficient evidence to conclude their homes were being used for marijuana grow operations.

Paul Gipps, Mission’s deputy chief administrative officer, spoke with a few property owners Wednesday who requested to be kept up to date because of pending property transactions, but 70 owners will be receiving notices in the mail, and 15 will have their status as a controlled substance property changed and fees reversed.

An analysis of the nearly 70 open files was completed June 1, said Gipps, adding a third party was used to help with the work.

Open cases are those identified by the Public Safety Inspection Team where owners have not paid the $5,200 inspection fee. The district is now looking into closed cases, but have not completed the remediation orders, which detail hazards on the property that must be repaired.

Reviews have been ongoing since March, and will be finished by month’s end, said Gipps. A summary will be presented to council June 27, and a report regarding the future of the Public Safety Inspection program will be discussed at a later meeting.

Mission’s Public Safety Inspection Program was launched in 2008 and suspended this past January after a group of residents rallied together and threatened legal action against the district after their homes were searched.