The District of Central Saanich is working together with the community and other levels of government to address community concerns about Brentwood Bay in a coordinated and collaborative approach.
Regional update – long-term strategy
Central Saanich staff, Central Saanich Police Service, the CRD, and a number of other volunteers and agencies are playing a role in monitoring and addressing issues of concern in Brentwood Bay. The District’s original plan to assume a Licence of Occupation from the Province has not come to fruition at this point as the language in the licence could not be amended and would legally put the District in the position of assuming other governments’ responsibilities. Our goal is to supplement the responsibilities of the federal and provincial government.
In 2021 the CRD established Saanich Peninsula Waterways Initiative at the request of North Saanich, Sidney and Central Saanich. The service provides a forum to bring First Nations, community groups and all levels of government together to collaborate and coordinate roles and responsibilities for action. The service will not have regulatory authority but will dedicate effort and attention through public outreach and engagement, advocacy, pursuit of specific projects and coordination of any local government actions. You can read about the service on the CRD's website.
Swimming in Brentwood Bay
The District samples the water at Clarke and Stelly's Cross Road beach access as these are swimming destination in Brentwood Bay. Beaches are monitored to protect swimmers from illnesses that may be linked to unacceptable levels of bacteria. Swimming in contaminated water can result in increased risk of ear, nose and throat infections or gastrointestinal illnesses. If the level of bacteria enterococci is unsafe, a Beach Advisory will be issued and signage will be posted in bacteria levels dictate (see Beach Reports).
In the case of an advisory, the municipality contacts Island Health, the Capital Regional District (CRD) are notified so they can investigate possible land sources of contamination, and District staff investigates Central Saanich's municipal sewer system near the beach to ensure there are no leakages. Wildlife and sewage from private vessels or properties mean that it is not easy to determine the source(s) of the bacteria.
The wharf is a 15-min loading zone and no overnight mooring is permitted. Bylaw, Parks and Police are increasing the presence from District to post notice and remove the vessels to be good stewards of the public wharf.
Reporting concerns about vessels in Brentwood Bay
Abandoned and neglected boats impact the health and safety of our shorelines, especially if fuel, chemicals or garbage are leaking into the marine environment.
Department of Fisheries and Oceans
If it's after hours or the vessel is an immediate threat. please call
Call 911 for emergency services if:
- lives are in danger
- there is a maritime emergency
- you’ve seen suspicious activities
- the vessel is an immediate and serious threat to public safety because of fire or explosion