Joanne Rose said she was blindsided by what took place at the Stephenville town council meeting on Thursday when an order was issued against her and her husband, Mayor Tom Rose.
The order, which is expected to be issued Monday, is for the owners of the property at 45 Hillier Ave., which she said is their farm home, to cease and desist using the premises for residential purposes within 14 days of the issuance of the order.
“We’re not sure why this happened, as we have all our permits in order,” she said after the meeting, which she attended.
She said she originally applied for an accessory building (28-feet by 40-feet) on the farm, which was approved on April 20, 2017, and built the structure.
Rose said she applied to have the accessory building made into a farmer’s dwelling in accordance with the permitted uses of accessory buildings as a farmer’s dwelling under Section 34(F) of the Town of Stephenville Development Regulations 2014.
She said that on Sept. 12, 2018, she applied to put in a septic system and well in accordance with Service NL and got approval for that on Oct. 6, 2018.
Rose said the system was installed that week, and then she and Tom went away for six weeks for his cancer radiation treatment.
“We’re not sure why this happened, as we have all our permits in order.” — Joanne Rose
“On Nov. 27, we came home to finish the dwelling and make it habitable,” she said.
She said that according to Deputy Mayor Susan Fowlow, chair of the development and planning committee, the issue is that they didn’t have an occupancy permit.
“I didn’t even think of that when Tom was so sick,” she said.
She said her husband completed an occupancy permit application and paid for it, but when she called the town on Tuesday and asked the status of the complaint against them by Shawn Boyd, a businessman in the town, and of the permit, she couldn’t get information on it.
Rose said she asked for a copy of the complaint filed against them by Boyd and asked if she could speak about it, but was informed it was a subject of a privileged meeting of council and she could hear about it at the public meeting.
Fowlow said after the meeting she had told Rose the occupancy permit was part of the issue and that the Roses were in violation of the permit.
She said the matter was before council and town staff, and council members were not permitted to speak about it until it went through the right protocol, which was at the public meeting Thursday.
“Nobody wants to issue this kind of order, but we took direction from the Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment,” Fowlow said.
Rose said she and Tom are going to investigate the situation and will appeal the order.
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