novacula Occami (Occam’s Razor) is the problem-solving principle that states that “Entities should not be multiplied without necessity.” The idea is attributed to English Franciscan friar William of Ockham (c. 1287–1347), a scholastic philosopher and theologian who used a preference for simplicity to defend the idea of divine miracles.

It is sometimes paraphrased by a statement like “the simplest solution is most likely the right one”.

It is also sometimes paraphrased as Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS).

It is highly unfortunate that most bureaucrats never learned, or embraced, that principle, either in high school, or in the halls of higher learning.

With respect to proposed bylaw 512 our elected representatives could give us a KISS and simply remove the word “seasonal” from the term “seasonal cottage” and, by doing so, could legalize the hundreds of ILLEGAL rentals which have, for decades, and long before the Islands Trust Act, formed part of our affordable rental housing stock.

Its not rocket science and its not brain surgery, and its certainly not rocket surgery.

I put forward the following question to the Chair of the Local Trust Committee and our representatives on Tuesday night:

“After you have legalized, for long term rental, 400 of 1300 properties which can, or do, have a seasonal cottage on them, are you going to then enforce against the 900 ILLEGAL seasonal cottages and evict the illegal tenants? If your answer is “No,” then what good does Bylaw 512 actually do?”

So, please…give us a KISS solution and then get on with real solutions to the housing crisis because 512 is nothing more than an illusionary bandaid, and nothing closely resembling a divine miracle…which is what we need to save us from losing this community.

And, I’m going to respectfully suggest you KISS us sooner than later, because, from the tone of the crowd on Tuesday night, Salt Spring Islanders are getting tired of biting their lips.



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