Craig’s Commentary

Volume 1 Number 30

30 July 2011

RE:  August 2, 2011 Committee of the Whole Agenda

 Part “A” – Excerpts from COW agenda package August 2, 2011

4.1.    11:00 am Sauble Beach Growth Strategy-Genevieve Scott, Cuesta Planning (1


 Sauble Beach Core Area Growth Strategy Proposal.pdf

 Sauble Growth Strategy-Discussion Paper-June 2010.pdf

 5.2. Procedural By-Law, Schedule A and By-Laws-Councillor Bowman

 5.6. CLK41-2011 Councillor Standen Resignation from Ad Hoc Committee

 5.7. CLK42-2011 Ombudsman Correspondence


 5.9. EDO13-2011 Strategic Planning Consultant-Variance to Budget


 5.12. EDO16-2011 Event Policy Amendments


 5.16. PW69-2011 Variance to Budget-Sideroad 15 Surface Water Study


 5.17. CAO68-2011 Pitre Purchase of a Portion of Roth Drive


 5.18. CAO69-2011 Policy Manual Amendment, Policy C.4.2 Harassment

 Part “B” – Craig’s comments

 4.1. 11:00 am Sauble Beach Growth Strategy-Genevieve Scott, Cuesta Planning (1


 I have written extensively about this scam called the “Sauble growth Strategy”.

 Commentary 15

 Commentary 23

 It was a strategy paid for by the residents. It was supposed to be a strategy built to conform to the people’s agenda.  It was supposed to be a study constrained to the Sauble downtown core area.  Without council knowledge or approval, it was switched, by CUESTA, to a growth strategy for the tourism and development industries. Without council knowledge or approval, it was switched to a growth strategy for all ofSaubleBeach. The switches were tacitly authorized by COA Cook without any knowledge of council. 

 Key CUESTA recommendations are sewers for all of Sauble and extensive commercial development.

 CUESTA did not do what they were required to do.  CUESTA has done much harm to the people of ward 3.  And now they are being rewarded with a one – hour deputation.   They are pushing some agenda that is not the resident’s agenda.  (See my comments below re the “strategic plan”).

 In a June 10 sewers committee meeting, MPW Dwyer boasted that he had substituted his own big-sauble-sewers agenda for the more modest Sauble resident’s agenda (modest sewers plan , DCA only, if at all) because the residents of Sauble are too “irrational” and “misinformed” to have any input of value.

 In substituting her own agenda (big commercial growth study  – all of Sauble) for that of the people of Sauble, has CAO Cook not demonstrated that her contempt for Sauble residents is even stronger than that of MR. Dwyer?

 5.2. Procedural By-Law, Schedule A and By-Laws-Councillor Bowman

 The procedural by-law section A14.6 reads:

 “After the first and second reading of a by-law, any member may ask to debate the by-law, and that by-law shall be referred to Committee of the Whole under “Items referred from Council or Committee of the Whole” for further debate, or with the consent of the majority of members present may be debated at the current meeting.”

 Section 14.6 is a pillar of our democratic system, as it requires that if any council member so desires, a by-law shall be debated separately from the meeting where first and second reading were done.  This rule is there to allow councillors and the public to engage in informed debate.

 On June 28 Mayor Close and his band knocked down that democratic pillar.  On June 28 Mayor Close decided that from then on a by-law would only be discussed at a separate meeting from first and second reading if a majority of council concurred that it should be debated separately. And then Mayor Close decided that by-laws would only be debated at all after first and second reading if a majority agreed with debating the by-law.

 In one ruling Mayor Close replaced our democratic institution of participation in informed discussion of by-laws with a tyranny of the majority.

 Our democracy is under siege.  First schedule “B”, the record of the voice of individual citizens to council, was dropped, because COA Cook felt that some citizens were abusing their right to participate.   Then all correspondence from the public to council was channeled through CAO Cook for censoring and filtering.  Then rules on deputations that made it virtually impossible to get on the agenda were passed.  Then third reading of by-laws on the same meeting as first and second became the norm, rather than the exception.

 And now debate of a by-law occurs only with permission of the majority.

 It’s democracy under siege at Camp Shenanigans.

 Good on Councillor Bowman and her like-minded colleagues for opposing the siege.

  5.7. CLK42-2011 Ombudsman Correspondence

 The clerk’s report 42-2011 (about the Ombudsman’s report of July 19, 2011) is very misleading.

 Reading clerk report 42-2011, you get the impression that council got a fairly clean bill of health from the Ombudsman regarding closed meetings.  Not so.  For the truth, readers should check out the actual letter from the ombudsman. (Link is in section “A” above). 

 The clerk seems to imply that the complaint that started the investigation was not valid.  The ombudsman’s report says otherwise.

 The ombudsman clearly found fault in several of council’s closed meetings.  The law is designed to allow the public to be fully involved.  The ombudsman’s letter says that the public was inappropriately shut out.  The ombudsman’s letter does not say explicitly that the town breached the law, but that’s the clear implication.

 Why the ombudsman is so timid is completely unfathomable to me.  

 In a strongly worded July 2010 report on improper closed meetings in TSBP (called “open conflict”), the Ombudsman indicated very clearly that Council broke their own by-laws and also the open meeting requirements of the Municipal Act.  But the Ombudsman was criticized for not doing anything about it.   So maybe the July 19, 2011 report was toned down to preempt similar criticism.

 Or maybe the Ombudsman is afraid that if he criticizes too much he’ll be branded as a criminal and hunted down by the vigilante bill 168 enforcers.

  5.9. EDO13-2011 Strategic Planning Consultant-Variance to Budget

 Having a strategic plan for the inhabitants would get on paper what kinds and levels of services we want, what level of taxes we are willing to pay, and what kind of community we want.  This would be good.

 But while the plan that’s in the works is billed as a strategic plan for the town, it is in fact not a strategic plan for the people of the town at all.  If left unopposed, and if not corrected, the coming “strategic plan” will in fact be a plan not for the people, but rather for the development industry and the commercial sector, and mostly the tourism industry.  It would be more properly called a “commercial/development strategic plan”.  If left unopposed, the so-called “strategic plan” will be in fact a plan for how to collect more money from the taxpayers and give it to the chambers of commerce.   If left unopposed, the so-called “strategic plan” will be in fact a plan for how to hand our communities over to the developers.  If left unopposed, the “strategic plan” will be a plan for putting an eighty-million dollar sewers system in at Sauble, (the cost of which will result in many losing their homes).  If left unopposed, the so-called “strategic plan” will be a plan for intensive commercial development ofSaubleBeach.  And if left unopposed, the “strategic plan” will turn Sauble beach into a cluster of high rise condominiums, big hotels, rows of townhouses on twenty-foot lots, and even a casino or two.  We face loss of our savings, loss of our homes, and loss of the quiet pastoral ambience that brought us to Sauble in the first place.

 The ward 3 people’s agenda is crystal clear.  In the October 2010 election, the voters of ward 3 strongly rejected the eighty-million dollar Sauble sewers plan, and rejected the “commercial/developer strategic plan”.  We voted to keep our homes, to keep our money, and to keep our community and its quiet small town ambience.

 So how is it possible, just nine months later, that the crystal clear people’s agenda is being replaced by someone else’s strategic agenda?  (See also my comments on the Sauble Growth Strategy above.)

 5.12. EDO16-2011 Event Policy Amendments

 TheEDO says that for a non-charity events liquor license, the town designates the event as a “significant event”.  That’s close but not quite right.

 For an event of municipal significance, the designation is  “municipally significant”.

 “A Public Event is one which is conducted by a registered charity or not for profit entity or an event of municipal, provincial, national or international significance. To be “municipally significant”, the event must have been so designated by the local municipal council and include a municipal resolution. To be “provincially, nationally or internationally significant”, the Registrar generally requires a municipal resolution.” (AGCO)

 It is hard to imagine that council would deem an event “municipally significant” if it wasn’t really “municipally significant” within the meaning of the words as intended by  the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.  But I may check of few resolutions just to be sure.  

 How about “Municipally significant” Chessfest?  Tiddlywinksjam?  Freezefest?

 Council should note that the liquor laws are there to protect the public.  So in the public interest, council should resist any urge to find the shortest route around those laws. 

 5.16. PW69-2011 Variance to Budget-Sideroad 15 Surface Water Study

 MPW Dwyer recommends spending $26,000 for Golder Associates to do an Environmental Assessment to decide whether and if so how to fix the sideroad 15 “problem”.

 One alternative should be modifying the bridge and road to the way it was designed in 2010 by Genivar.   Since the water flow and water level modeling and most of the engineering for this alternative have already been done by Genivar, it might make some sense to at least invite Genivar to bid on conducting a new EA or EA-like process.  It could be a lot cheaper.

 5.17. CAO68-2011 Pitre Purchase of a Portion of Roth Drive

 When a resident presented to council in May or June, he indicated that he needed to purchase part of Roth drive so he could make his Berford Lake home his permanent residence.   I knew there was something not right in that explanation.  In fact that resident does not need the road to make his Berford lake home his permanent residence.  And last Tuesday at council meeting we found out the real reason for that resident wanting the land.  It’s because he does not want the public using public land in front of his property.  Last week we learned, by his own admission, that the resident had many months ago erected a chain across the public road, with a “no trespassing” sign on it.  The chain was completely on town property, and was restricting people from using and accessing town property.

 It appears that the resident’s request to purchase has nothing to do with permanent residence status.

 Other residents in the area are strongly opposed to the sale to the resident who put the chain up.  That should be the end of it.  Council should do the right thing.



Tis da last week in Jewli

Da sumars half gone

Da septic is full

and soggy is da lawn

Da plovers dun breedin

Da lake is all green

Da beach is all crowded

da trash cans all full

No sewers are needed

We know this is bull!

So suck it up boys and girls! We need sewers to grow this community! No sewers no growth, no growth more taxes to stand still!

All the retired folks living in their piece of paradise have to think in terms of exit strategy. No growth means no demand no demand means no one to sell to. No sewers means more polution which decreases demand and increases the tax rate to service what we have already.

You may be happy right now but sooner or later you are going to end up in the big beach in the sky and your estate is gonna get nailed with the cost of sewers, water and probate.

Right now the cost of money is low. As we enter into the hyper inflation stage coming we will be able to pay off the debt with cheap dollars. Remember Trudeau??

Whether it is 40 thousand or 50 thousand a unit who cares in five years it is going to be double that and we are going to be forced to do it anyway. We may as well get it done now and let the new owners pay for it.

The dynamic pair from Squabble Bitch, Janice and Marilyn fighting the sewers are gonna cost your grand children huge.

Some say we need them some say we don’t but I am here to tell you that you are going to stall your way into bankruptcy if you don’t.

All the scrimpin and savin was for not if we do not grow.

Let’s hype things up, bite the bullet get the sewers and water in, build like maniacs sell the mess to the immigrants and citiots, then we move to the third world collect our pensions and live on a new beach with no taxes, citiots or immigrants!  Hell we could even take the Plovers there and save them flying south for the winter.

At the end of the day the new owners are going to get the bill cause we all will have sold to them and gone where it is warm. Pakistan is really nice in February, course the odds of Willy surviving Bar-B-Que season would be pretty much nil!

I can see it now Rhonda will be in charge of a mess of off white tax payers “Tankin her bery much ” for her efforts. Curry and Samosa’s will be served as opposed to burgers and fries. No one will have to worry about walking into affluent on the beach and the water will be as clean as Walkerton on a sunny day.

We will be on a wonderful beach in the South hoping our pension cheques don’t bounce, with a large Margretta, sun tan lotion, roasting plover in our new-found paradise.

It needed to be said!!!