General Meeting – 17 August 2006

Greenspace Alliance of Canada’s Capital
Minutes of Meeting of Board of Directors, August 17, 2006

Champlain Park Fieldhouse, Ottawa, Ontario

Present: Janice Seline (recording secretary), Daphne McCree, Erwin Dreessen, Juan Pedro Unger, Bill Royds, Amy Kempster, Thomas Kapler, Carol Gudz (Chair)
Regrets: Chantal Vicha

Carol Gudz called the meeting to order at 7:35 pm.

The Agenda was approved with the following changes:

Items 6 and 9 may be discussed together, as they touch on the same subjects.
Items 7 and 8, ditto.
Add Item 14 – Election report card

Moved: Juan Pedro Unger. Seconded: Daphne McCree. Carried, unanimous.

The Minutes of the July 2006 meeting were approved without comment.

Moved: Erwin Dreessen. Seconded: Amy Kempster. Carried, unanimous.

1.Communications Committee Report:

Juan Pedro Unger gave the report. He began by nominating Chantal Vicha for the post of Communications Director. Approved unanimously.

Chantal Vicha is preparing a time line for main items, the website and the newsletter.

The Communications Committee proposes events to be added to the schedule:

a. a debate among mayoral candidates
b. a meeting of organizations in the National Capital region to seek common ground

Comments: A debate must be booked and planned very soon. It is a lot of work, and requires resources. It might be proposed to the FCA as their event, with our assistance.

The last time such a debate was held there did not seem to be any tangible outcome, other than that it was newsworthy and some promises were made. It may have helped the election of the present mayor.

It could be feasible, some optimism about result. An opportunity to present the Report Card.

– Propose event to FCA.           Amy Kempster
– Prepare time line, plan publicity       Chantal Vicha


Chantal Vicha is working with Ron Rancourt and Martin (Chantal’s friend) on a mock-up. The newsletter will be largely for the website, and sent out by email only, with invitation to send it to other interested parties. Possible title might be Green Spaces – there was some discussion of the title and there appeared to be a consensus that it is preferred over another idea, Greenpath.

Comments: There should be a review process, at least by directors for now, and eventually by an editorial committee, before the newsletter gets sent. Start small and simple, and grow it.

Motion: J.P. Unger moved that approval be given for the production of a mock-up and the formulation of a plan for a review and approval process, as well as plans for distribution and content development.

Seconded: Bill Royds. Carried, unanimous.


Thomas Kapler reports that a new interface is being considered, the DRUPAL system, which is based on the Wiki concept. Writers can submit, invite comments, and ultimately the author approves the publication. The newsletter on line could be the traditional type, with a review process and editorial work, or we could develop an interactive newsletter.

4.Linking communities and greenspaces – follow-up to funding application

Thomas Kapler received a reply from the City of Ottawa, raising two issues: there is an ownership conflict in that the NCC owns some of the land in question, while the City also owns some. The second issue is that the City will develop its own signage and there will be no need for additional signage.

Comments: Bill Royds commented that the signage we are proposing is more interpretive and informative than that which the City usually supplies. We might propose that we work with the Parks department to develop signage, although this might not be feasible either. The bottom line is that our funding proposal has been refused.

5.Alliance involvement in environmental stewardship – Thomas Kapler’s proposal

Erwin Dreessen encouraged the pursuit of this project and asks what might be the next steps.

Comments: Cooperation with other groups might be sought, such as Friends of the Jock River, or OFGAC. An interactive website might be an outcome – would the GACC website be useful for this? The Ottawa Stewardship website might be the right venue, if it is not dead.

Motion: Thomas Kapler moved that discussion of the website be moved to an online forum.

Seconded: Amy Kempster. Carried, unanimous.

6.OP OMB Environment Hearing follow-up and 9. Definition of Adverse Impact:

Motion: Erwin Dreessen moved that the Board support the definition of adverse impact used. The motion carried.

7.OP Appeal – Country Lot Estates, and 8. Reply to Tim Mark

There was a discussion concerning whether or not the appeal should be pursued, given that the Official Plan will be revisited in 2008 and consideration of members’ availability.

Motion: Juan Pedro Unger moved that the letter to Tim Mark be written as proposed, working on the assumption that the appeal will go ahead.
Seconded: Bill Royds. Carried.

10.Leitrim Wetlands.

Bill Royds reported that the Sierra Club is leading. Albert Dugal has said that there will be another appeal of the petition to take water by the developer soon.

11.Carp River.

Carol Gudz reported that there was a small turnout for the letter writing workshop, and that sample letters are available. There is an invitation from the Minister of the Environment to meet to resolve differences. We will participate.

12.Poets’ Pathway.

An invitation has been sent for the Poets’ Hill inauguration on September 13. Erwin Dreessen reported that Jacques Legendre had been met with concerning protection of the view from Poets’ Hill, and that a letter would go to the NCC.

13.Coalition for NCC Renewal.

Erwin Dreessen is working on a position paper. The hearing may start in October.

14.Election Report Card

Not discussed.

15.Treasurer’s Report

None available. Amy Kempster will send a report by email.

Adjournment : 10:20 pm.
Moved by Bill Royds. Seconded by Daphne McCree.

Recording secretary: Janice Seline
September 20 2006