YEAR IN REVIEW January: PSIT problems come to head

The unpopular and controversial marijuana grow-op inspection team was put on indefinite postponement.

  • Dec. 28, 2011 5:00 p.m.

Concerns about the Public Safety Inspection Team (PSIT) gained widespread attention in January after a group of homeowners who said their residences were illegally searched met with the B.C. Civil Liberties Association to discuss launching a civil suit against the District of Mission.

PSIT scanned BC Hydro records and flagged properties using 93 kWh per day.

Later in the month, district council deferred PSIT operations for at least a month pending a program review. Council also asked staff to hold current cases already charged the $5,200 inspection fee until the review concluded.

The inquiry was to examine team member qualifications, public relations training and the successes and failures of the program.

At a council meeting in late January, residents complained their human rights were violated and were charged a hefty fine without an opportunity to prove their innocence or challenge PSIT’s findings.

Then-councillor Paul Horn apologized to the people negatively affected by the bylaw. “It was never the intention to hurt people.”