Jack Hanna wants closed doors, opened about the red herring lawsuits

More than 200 people packed the Springwater Township council chamber and foyer yesterday to show opposition to an expansion of Midhurst that would allow the village to grow from 3,400 now to 30,000 by 2031.

An article this week in AWARE Simcoe called Midhurst residents turn out to oppose expansion: Hanna calls for open discussion by Springwater council by Kate Harries. Word pdf

The +200 people cheered first Rick McFadden of the Midhurst Ratepayers Association and then:

They cheered again when Councillor Jack Hanna – who represents the Midhurst ward – urged his fellow councillors to have their next debate on the issue in a public council meeting and not behind closed doors, so residents can understand council’s concerns.

“We shouldn’t send people away here tonight thinking that we can do something if we can’t,” Hanna added. ” If we have no intention of doing anything, I don`t think we should let them go away thinking that we`re going to consider doing something and revising the plans the way they are today.”

In his presentation, McFadden said:  “We believe that the residents of Midhurst were not adequately notified about the opportunities for public input or adequately consulted during the development of the Midhurst Secondary Plan

McFadden nicely shatters that the threats of lawsuits are a red herring:

McFadden dismissed responses the MRA has heard from some members of council, such as ‘The matter is out of our hands,”  “We have been dealt this card”, or “We could be sued.”

He pointed out that the Ontario Municipal Act protects councilors who perform their duties and make policy decisions in good faith, from legal proceedings.

However, he said, councilors do have obligations – to act in the best interest of their constituents.


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