• Dean Ellis v. Environmental Health Officer

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    Decision Date: March 5, 2001

    Panel: Alan Andison

    Keywords: sewage disposal permit; reconsideration; procedural fairness.

    This was a reconsideration of Appeal No. 2000-HEA-019, which dismissed Dean Ellis’ appeal of an Environmental Health Officer’s (“EHO”) decision refusing to issue a sewage disposal permit. After the Board had issued its decision, Mr. Ellis informed the Board that he had not been provided with a copy of the EHO’s final written submission, and had thereby been deprived of an opportunity to respond to that submission. The Board re-opened the appeal to consider Mr. Ellis’ response and ensure procedural fairness.

    Mr. Ellis alleged that the EHO applied different standards to his permit application than to other applications for similar systems on nearby properties. The Board found that Mr. Ellis’ rebuttal submission provided no new evidence to support the merits of his application and provided no basis to refute the Panel’s previous findings. They also provided no evidence that the EHO had failed to properly consider the relevant regulations and policies, nor any indication that Mr. Ellis’ application was the subject of unfair or discriminatory treatment. Further, even if the EHO had improperly exercised his discretion in approving similar systems on other properties, which was not established, the Board held that two “wrongs” do not make a “right”, and that it was not prepared to use its authority to approve an unsafe system.

    The appeal was dismissed.