Why my family is no longer a member of AWARE Simcoe.

May 22, 2017

Organizations are strong and then they change.

(l) Les Stewart SPCC, ON Premier Kathleen Wynne and Don Morgan, Chair AWARE Simcoe

On August 9, 2013, at a Barrie Liberal event (see above) I told Mr. Morgan that I had concluded that the Midurst Ratepayers’ Association, MRA were acting in bad faith. In effect, they were acting as an obstacle to defeating the Midhurst Secondary Plan. Previously, I had openly stated that conclusion to the then-MRA president.

I presented the concept of not-for profit control fraud to Mr. Morgan recently because I suspect the similar issue is arising with the Simcoe County Greenbelt Coalition.

With a development worth $40-billion, it should not be a surprise that deceit and “double-heartedness” occurs.

My background:

People are free to believe who they want to believe.

Time has a habit of revealing all deceptions.


Toronto Star: Brampton correct in calling in the Ontario Ombudsman to investigate development deal.

May 6, 2015

A $500-million development triggers a call for an independent investigation.

Andre Marin

Andre Marin to look into a controversial development deal.// TORONTO STAR

The province will have to agree but in today’s Toronto Star: Brampton city council is right to ask Ontario Ombudsman André Marin to investigate a controversial development

It was supposed to shine a light on Brampton’s murky business dealings, but a $269,000 report by a high-profile municipal lawyer has only generated more smoke.

Brampton residents, city council and Mayor Linda Jeffrey have every right to be outraged. Instead of supplying credible answers, lawyer George Rust-D’Eye’s report raised further questions about a controversial $500-million development deal, and about his own investigation.

Council was correct in unanimously voting to ask Ontario Ombudsman André Marin to launch an inquiry into the city’s procurements. Indeed, municipal leaders had little choice given what they were handed — a document repeatedly called a “whitewash” in Brampton’s council chambers on Monday.

As reported by the Star’s San Grewal, Rust-D’Eye exonerated city staff of any misconduct in a deal that had raised concern about how some developers were being treated. Council critics noted that he reached that finding through heavy reliance on claims made by the very staff he was investigating. That’s not good enough to maintain public confidence in the fairness of the process.

Concern was also expressed about Rust-D’Eye’s previous work for the law firm WeirFoulds, which was involved in the development deal’s initial stages. Rust-D’Eye said that connection did not pose a conflict of interest, since he hadn’t worked on this specific development file. But, according to WeirFoulds, he was head of the firm’s municipal law section at the time.

Even if Rust-D’Eye wasn’t technically in conflict, he should have known this connection might raise a troubling suspicion of potential bias — one that would likely undermine community trust in his findings. And that’s precisely what has happened.

Adding financial insult to the mix, the cost of his report was initially pegged at between $50,000 and $60,000. Rust-D’Eye said he worked as efficiently as he could and gave the public a break by charging less than his usual rate. Despite that, his analysis arrived with a bill to taxpayers of more than a quarter of a million dollars.

It’s a disappointing outcome on every level. But, to their credit, Brampton’s leaders aren’t abandoning their search for answers and have turned to Ontario’s ombudsman.

Mr. Marin, it’s your turn to shine the spotlight.

The Midhurst Secondary Plan has been estimated to be worth 80 times as much as the Brampton development.


Should Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne empower an independent, public investigation into the secretive Midhurst Secondary Plan?

July 9, 2014

The intense sprawl pressure in south Simcoe County will not end even when the legal “loophole” is reversed.

Kathleen Wynne2

Mark Wanzel/Barrie Examiner

Premier Wynne continues to talk to the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association, MRA.

Barrie Advance, Midhurst ratepayers not giving up fight after OMB defeat:

Buxton [MRA president] said her group met with Premier Kathleen Wynne during the election campaign and has met with other senior government officials since then.

“(Wynne) promised us she’d order a review and she’d involve us in high-level talks so we could flesh out our concerns and be involved. She’s keeping her word,” Buxton said.

Atwood bear crop

Time: 1:51 to 2:15

This is not the prototypical tree-hugger against the capitalist.

This is the prototypical ratepayer against some people who did some pretty secretive things to them behind their backs.

And it’s no longer the era of “we can do things under the table, in small places and no one will notice”. We live in the age of the internet, so things become public pretty quickly.

Margaret Atwood

Link to full video.


The Margaret Atwood anti-sprawl Midhurst petition challenge is shattered!!

March 30, 2014

It will be a pleasure to welcome Ms. Atwood and perhaps some of her friends to our just-right sized, 3,500 population, nearly 200 year old community.

MCC SPCC sign 1

Midhurst Community Centre, Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association, Annual Meeting, January 26, 2014.

The cancer-like urban sprawl plan threatens farmland, the Minesing Wetlands,  Springwater Park, forced hook-ups for sewer and water for all Midhurst and out-of-sight tax bills for all Springwater Township residents for decades into the future.

As reported by AWARE Simcoe on March 26th, Yes! Midhurst petiton tops 5.000:

Final push joined by Atwood in Twitter feed
Today, the 5,000th person signed the petition to save the village of Midhurst (population 3,500), preserve the 756 hectares of surrounding farmland and stop the proposed effluent discharge into the Willow Creek and the internationally treasured Minesing Wetlands.

And the count of those opposed to the Midhurst Secondary Plan, which would expand the Midhurst population to 28,000, continues to rise.

The final Twitter push from Save Midhurst Now proclaiming that only 13 signatures were needed was re-tweeted in the early hours today by author Margaret Atwood, who has pledged to visit Midhurst and do a workshop at a nearby high school if 5,000 people sign the petition.

The Midhurst residents’ group has unveiled a new video and song in support of the cause. Click here to view it.

Sign the petition

Congratulations to everyone, especially to Ms. Sandy Buxton and Margaret Prophet and all their talented members at the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association.

Midhurst Community Centre iLoveMidhurst.ca 2

Posted also on FranchiseFool.com and SpringwaterParkcc.org.


St. Margaret of Atwood says: Sign the anti-Midhurst Secondary Plan sprawl petition.

February 3, 2014

Right here. Right now.

Margaret_Atwood

Margaret Atwood stands behind the environment by opposing the Midhurst Secondary Plan.

Statement:

To:
Mayor Collins and Springwater Township Councillors, Township of Springwater
Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario
Glenn Murray, Minister of Infrastructure
Linda Jeffrey, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing
James Bradley, Minister of Environment

Dear Mayor Collins and Springwater Council,
RE: STOP THE MIDHURST SECONDARY PLAN

I have recently signed a petition to put a stop to the Midhurst Secondary Plan (MSP). Let me explain my reasons for opposing this development.

In 2012, the Midhurst residents presented a petition against this plan with 1,456 signatures. This petition seemed to have little impact on Springwater Council. At a recent council meeting, it was clear that the local residents are still fully opposed to this plan as outlined in the Barrie Examiner. I hope that this new petition provides further evidence to Council that this issue is growing in concern.

There are several reasons why I am requesting that you repeal the MSP:

  • The MSP will cause a loss of 1,880 acres of prime farmland – enough to feed almost 2,000 people! This loss will happen at a time when we are losing farmland at an atrocious rate. With projects such as this, local food will soon no longer be an option.
  • At full build-out the MSP will dump 10.6 million litres of sewage effluent into the tiny Willow Creek and this could have a major detrimental environmental impact on the internationally recognized Minesing Wetlands. These ecosystems are fragile – the impact may be irreversible!
  • The Township has not done a comprehensive evaluation of the financial impacts of the MSP. Is this plan what is best for taxpayers? Will this plan leave the community financially stable or potentially bankrupt it? In such hard economic times, prudence is key.
  • There is little support that this plan will benefit the community. The Township has claimed that the MSP will bring jobs and stimulate the local economy but doesn’t have the facts to support this claim. It seems like these benefits are based on speculation and wishful thinking.
  • The MSP will eradicate an easy-living rural community and change it to a fast-paced, high density city. The citizens of this community are rural by choice, not urban by force.

I recognize that intelligent growth which preserves the character of Midhurst is necessary. Consequently, Midhurst village has long planned to add up to 6,500 residents by 2031; however, to quadruple the population increase for no apparent reason to potentially 30,000 people at the expense of so much does not indicate to me responsible growth planning.

I urge you to put a stop to the Midhurst Secondary Plan and find a better way to grow Springwater communities that doesn’t threaten the landscape of a small, rural community, the farms that feed us all and the fresh water that deserves our protection. I’m calling on you to do the right thing- listen to the people and represent the wishes of those who elected you. Stop the Midhurst Secondary Plan.
Sincerely,
[Your name]

AWARE Simcoe coverage.

I have signed this petition and oppose the MSP

Posted also on SpringwaterParkcc.org.


Who benefits with the premature death of the Midhurst Historical Society?

July 25, 2013

Are there many benefits for an economic and political alliance in having everyone forget the past?

Pioneer history

Pioneer History of Midhurst, The Midhurst Historical Society, 1975.

The past provides context to judge the recklessness of the proposed Midhurst Secondary Plan.

A History

A History of Vespra Township, The Vespra Township Council, Allan Anderson & Betty Tomlinson Anderson, Editors, 1987.

Destroying or burning the books would be raise too much of a stir with the staff. Much better to throw out the original research because “no one cares about history”.

  • Such truly ignorant rubbish…proven false in 99% of the world.

Such hubris. Quotes:

History is a vast early warning system. Norman Cousins 1915 – 1990

History is a cyclic poem written by time upon the memories of man. Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792 – 1822

Where they have burned books, they will end in burning human beings. Heinrich Heine 1797 – 1856

Cross-posted on SpringwaterParkcc.org.

The past is always a rebuke to the present. Robert Penn Warren


Top 10 searches this week on iLoveMidhurst.ca

January 29, 2012

WordPress does not show me the names of the people searching this weblog. Same for those who choose to follow the weblog by email.

But what (or whom) is being searched for is valuable feedback to those of us in the municipal government social media space.

  1. erving goffman
  2. “midhurst secondary plan”
  3. brad sokach
  4. mario giampeitri geranium
  5. “big bay point”
  6. bullying facts
  7. omb appeal geranium corporation secondary plan
  8. helen coutts and geranium
  9. cheryl shindruk
  10. shauna dudding

Word melt: erving goffman “midhurst secondary plan” brad sokach mario giampeitri geranium “big bay point” bullying facts omb appeal geranium corporation secondary plan helen coutts and geranium cheryl shindruk shauna dudding


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