Barnfield residents may have to testify under oath 

All Barnfield residents who are part of a lawsuit against the Resort Municipality of Whistler could be examined under oath to determine what they knew and understood at the time they bought their employee housing lots in 1997.

The RMOW has directed its lawyers to seek a court order so that each property owner will be examined individually.

Last month the owners of 16 homes filed a petition in the Supreme Court of British Columbia suing the RMOW and the Whistler Housing Authority over the covenants on their properties. There are 24 names on the petition.

The petitioners would like the courts to decide if the price restrictions on their homes and their lots are legally enforceable.

The Barnfield Homeowner’s Association issued a release at that time explaining that they had hoped to resolve this issue before going to the courts.

The 23-home neighbourhood was developed in 1997 as an employee housing project. According to the RMOW there are resident restrictions and price restrictions on each home.

What that means is that the price of each property is tied to a set formula, only allowing small incremental increases in value.

For example a $300,000 home built in Barnfield on a $100,000 lot in 1997 would now be worth roughly $440,000.

The municipality has also directed its lawyers to try to protect the taxpayers against a costly lawsuit.

Information Officer Diana Waltmann stated in a press release: "In a move to protect the taxpayers’ interest, the municipality has also instructed its lawyers to ask the court for compensation from the petitioners equal to any financial advantage they may gain from the challenge to the housing covenants."

A lawsuit over the Nita Lake Lodge development cost the municipality more than $96,000.

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