GREENSPACE ALLIANCE OF CANADA’S CAPITAL
August 24, 2015
Hintonburg Community Centre
1064 Wellington Street West
Members present: Erwin Dreessen (chair and notetaker), Amy Steele, Nicole DesRoches, Iola Price, and Judy Makin
Regrets: Paul Johanis, Jason Kania, Sol Shuster, and Juan Pedro Unger
The meeting commenced at 7:15 p.m.
A modified agenda was agreed upon.
2. Administrative items
a. Minutes of July 27, 2015: Amy moved, seconded by Erwin, to approve the Minutes of July 27 as distributed. Agreed.
b. National Tree day event, September 23: Amy will inquire if we can share a table with the Champlain Oaks project.
c. CAFES meeting, August 29: This meeting will be mainly devoted to Complete Streets and active transportation. Amy will attend.
d. FCA meeting, September 9: Erwin will be out of town. Iola may be able to attend.
e. Google analytics: Jason recently hooked Google analytics up to our web site; data have been collected from August 8 onwards. At our September meeting, Jason has agreed to make a little presentation on what can be learned from these data.
3. Action updates
a. Annual Report translation: Erwin has reviewed Anne-Marie Hogue’s translation. Nicole will do a final review.
b. NCENN survey: No progress.
c. Liaison with FCA: At FCA’s invitation Erwin and Iola met on August 20 with Gary Sealy and Sheila Perry. FCA will agree that an FCA Environment Committee would lead to too much duplication, given our membership and the existence of CAFES. Instead, we will be the first point of contact on environmental issues that may arise. FCA will renew its reciprocal membership in the Alliance. FCA would like to explore creating a map of natural areas in Ottawa and beyond — an initiative that could take place in the context of other initiatives by the City, the National Capital Commission, the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Province of Ontario. In follow-up, Erwin provided Gary and Sheila with a number of studies that have recently been completed.
d. LEAR review: Clarke Topp and Erwin met on August 11 with David Kroetsch and Ian Jarvis, scientists at AAFC. They received assurances about the reputation of the Ministry’s scientists who are leading the map making initiative. It was suggested that the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association be contacted to discuss our concerns about the make-up of the Advisory Committee. Amy noted a contact with a former colleague at Statistics Canada. Sol’s contact with the Canadian Organic Growers also needs to be solidified.
e. Towards Official Plan 2019: Nicole and Erwin met on August 13 with Manjit Basi of the Citizens Academy who expressed significant interest in our idea of a “new” Official Plan. She will take it to her Board and report back. Manjit, who serves on the Board of 1125@Carleton, reported that this group is still in search of its mandate. We slightly amended the kernel of our idea:
Promote development of a “new” Official Plan for Ottawa in 2019 that springs from a renewed Vision and genuine and ongoing public engagement; that will be shorter, less ambiguous, and avoid duplication.
f. Kanata North Community Design Plan: Judy reported that evolving designs are not responsive to community input but instead follow the preferences of various landowners. The City’s Parks and Recreation staff also refuses to change its policies which are at variance with what the community and even the developers want. Contradictions with the Building Better and Smarter Suburbs principles are also evident. The stormwater pond is still planned to be in the adjacent rural area, though it would be designed to leave woodlot S23 intact. Meetings with various neighbouring communities are planned. Judy was encouraged to contact Councillor Nussbaum in addition to the Kanata Councillors who are currently involved in the process.
4. City consultation on “significant woodlands”
Erwin and Owen Clarkin will attend this August 26 stakeholder consultation meeting; other attendees will be the Conservation Partners, the NCC and Ecology Ottawa. Some input was received today from Bettina Hinkelman.
5. Provincial reviews
– Iola will take on the Conservation Authorities Act discussion paper (deadline October 19).
– Nicole will examine the Wetlands policy paper and the September 2014 report by the Mississippi-Rideau Region Climate Change Adaptation Project (deadline October 30).
– Erwin will prepare some comments on the Municipal, Toronto and Conflict of Interest Acts (deadline end October).
6. OMB appeals of OPA 150
a. Hearing of August 6 on the motion by Taggart and Walton: Erwin posted a report to the GA List on this hearing on August 9, forwarded it to City Hall reporters and five Councillors and also briefed Councillor Leiper in person, at his request.
b. “Consolidated hearing” for Sunset Lakes appeal: Paul and Erwin met with the President of Sunset Lakes and Erwin also met with their and the City’s lawyer about an issues list for the October 19-23 hearing. Andrew Cowan will be available to serve as our expert witness, relating the findings of Brianna Aird’s report on country lot estate policy which is due on October 1.
7. Other business
Nicole reported that an Outaouais Foundation under the aegis of the Ottawa Community Foundation is in the works.
The meeting adjourned at 9:10 p.m.
The next monthly meeting will be on September 28, 2015 at 7:15 p.m. in the Hintonburg CC.