Man takes ditch-tax case to Nova Scotia Court of Appeal
HALIFAX -- A case now being considered by Nova Scotia's Court of Appeal could affect the storm-water charge levied on homeowners in rural areas of Halifax.
A Hammonds Plains, N.S., man has taken the matter to court arguing, among other things, that his constitutional rights were violated when the regional water utility set up an account in his name and sent him a bill.
There is a groundswell of opposition to the controversial policy that doesn't sit well with a lot of people in the neighourhood.
It's a debate over ditches and who pays Halifax Water to deal with storm water in the municipality.
When it was handed the responsibility a number of years ago, the utility set up accounts for nearly all homeowners and promptly sent bills.
Many have paid, but others have been disputed and appealed.
David Banfield got one and he's been fighting it ever since.
"This just didn't feel right, you know?" Banfield said. "I'm on a well and a septic and they decided to give me a bill without my consent."
Banfield took his case to Nova Scotia's Court of Appeal on Tuesday to make his argument in front of three judges.
The judges reserved decision, which is an encouraging sign for Banfield.
"For me, that means that I've given them an awful lot to think about because what I'm saying to them is this is not just affecting Halifax residents, this is a precedent that could be set that's going to go from one end of the country to the other end of the country to the other end of the country," Banfield said.