Property owners and aspiring entrepreneurs are advised to adhere to Ekurhuleni’s Land Use Scheme and by-laws to avoid incurring fines, warns Ward 18 Clr Heather Hart. Violating zoning regulations may result in administrative penalties imposed by the city. This caution follows an incident in Edenvale where a property owner faced fines when a tenant conducted unauthorised business activities on the property. Hart emphasises that individuals engaging in non-compliant property use risk daily financial penalties ranging from R500 to R5,000 based on the nature and location of the violation.
Hart, the Shadow MMC of City Planning, notes that illegal property use is prevalent across the city, with common contraventions in Edenvale, including motor vehicle workshops, spray painting, goods manufacturing, and room rentals. Property owners and landlords alike are reminded of their responsibility to be aware of activities on their premises. If tenants operate businesses improperly, landlords bear the penalties. Hart underscores the importance of businesses complying with the CoE’s Land Use Scheme of 2022 and its spatial planning land use management by-laws of 2019.
While the city is tightening regulations on illegal land use, certain exemptions, such as home enterprises (e.g., home industries, administrative, and professional services), are outlined in the Land Use Scheme. To avoid violations, property owners and business operators must verify if the property is correctly zoned for the intended purpose. If not, seeking rezoning through the City Planning Department is advised upon receiving a notice. Ignoring notices may lead to accumulating administrative penalties on the property owner’s municipal account, potentially resulting in electricity disconnection by the CoE. Hart urges community members to remain vigilant and report any suspicious business activities in their neighbourhoods to local councillors, Customer Care Centres, or the City Planning Department.
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Photo: Supplied by Citizen