General Meeting – 27 July 2015


Greenspace Watch

General Meeting

July 27, 2015

Hintonburg Community Centre

1064 Wellington Street West

K1Y 2Y3

Members present: Erwin Dreessen (chair and notetaker), Amy Steele, Paul Johanis, Jason Kania, and Judy Makin

Regrets: Iola Price, David McNicoll, Nicole DesRoches, Sol Shuster, and Juan Pedro Unger

The meeting commenced at 7:30 p.m.

1. Agenda

A modified agenda was agreed upon.

2. Administrative items

a. Minutes of June 22, 2015: Paul moved, seconded by Amy, to approve the Minutes of June 22 as distributed. Agreed.

b. Translation of Annual Report: In progress by Anne-Marie Hogue.

3. Action updates

a. NCENN survey: Action: Some Board members attending undertook to fill out the survey.

b. Country Lot Estate research: Brianna Aird has started this project, coached by Andrew Cowan under the aegis of the Ottawa Eco-Talent Network. A report is expected by October 1.

c. Site alteration by-law research: Amina Kinnirath will undertake this research for 10 weeks from September to December, as a Practicum in her 4th year Geography and Environmental Studies program (Carleton University). Erwin and Iola will supervise her work.

d. Airport Parkway/Lester Road widening: Erwin and Elina Kreutzberg (CPAWS-OV) met with City and consultant staff on June 25, including the author of the draft Natural Heritage Existing Conditions report, Sean Miller (Golder Associates). Comments were received and clarifications provided. Requests were made to staff about road kill data.

e. Encroachment on the Central Experimental Farm: The new Coalition’s letter to the Ottawa Hospital is now published, as will a transcript of NCC responses to Heritage Ottawa’s questions at the Annual Public Meeting of June 25. A reply from Min. Yasir Naqvi was also received.

f. Conversation with Martin Canning: Martin has moved to Toronto as assistant to Min. Bob Chiarelli, senior Minister responsible for Eastern Ontario. Erwin spoke with him on July 14 regarding a potential Regional Plan, the LEAR review and Bill 73.

4. Kanata North tree cutting and Community Design Plan

The City’s decision to withdraw charges against Metcalfe Realty for illegal tree cutting was posted to the GA List and web site on July 23. Nick Stow’s rationale for finding woodlot “S20” not significant was received today and will be posted as well.

Judy updated us on the status of other aspects of the Community Design Plan for “Area 1.” Most worrisome is that the storm water pond would be located in the adjacent rural area, contrary to what the City has assured us is its “standard practice.” Another is Parks and Recreation’s apparent preference for removing all trees in the planned parks and its insistence on separating the school grounds from the park. The next meeting of the PAC for this CDP is in August.

5. OMB appeals of OPA 150

a. Motion by Taggart/Walton: Erwin briefly reviewed the City’s Response to the Motion material filed by Taggart/Walton for the hearing on August 6-7.

b. Consolidated hearing for Sunset Lakes: Sunset Lakes is the only appellant explicitly appealing the prohibition of future country lot subdivisions. Following the April pre-hearing, the Board ordered a consolidated hearing of Sunset Lakes’ appeals, including outstanding items related to pending applications for expansion of the Village of Greely; this will take place on October 19-23. Erwin briefed attendees on Sunset Lakes’ objectives and we discussed what position to take. Action: Paul will make a site visit.

6. LEAR review

With Clarke Topp’s assistance, we expect to meet soon with certain individuals who are close to this process and will then decide on further action. A 2008 report by an Agricultural Working Group set out a Vision for Agriculture in Ottawa that appears to corroborate our concerns about the current process. No-one present volunteered at this time to contact Canadian Organic Growers.

7. Finding partners for a new Ottawa Official Plan in 2019

Erwin was encouraged to pursue contact with the Citizens Academy and 1125@Carleton.

8. Review of Ontario statutes

The Province is currently seeking feedback on, among other statutes, the Conservation Authorities Act (CAA), the Municipal Act and the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act. Deadline for comments on the CAA review is October 19; no-one present at this time volunteered to review the Discussion Paper. The Discussion Paper for the other Acts mention no deadline and could be reviewed by or with the assistance of the FCA and the Ontario Environmental Network’s newly formed Policy Caucus; its themes are Accountability and Transparency – Municipal Financial Sustainability – Responsive and Flexible Municipal Government. Action: Erwin to pursue.

9. Brief reports

a. NCC Annual Public Meeting – June 15: Nicole intervened. A transcript of the NCC’s response may be available. Action: Erwin to obtain.

b. Community Foundation – “Ottawa Insights”: Erwin attended a June 26 workshop on the “Environment and Sustainability” component of a web site that is under development.

c. OF-NC Conservation Committee: The June 30 meeting updated members about the year-long bio-blitz in Constance Bay, a visit to the Gervais property and progress made in saving baby turtles around Mud Lake.

The meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

The next monthly meeting will be on August 24, 2015 at 7:15 p.m. in the Hintonburg CC.