Saturday, December 22, 2012


Two more environmental items were on last Tuesday's Woolwich Council Agenda. A Frances Lea of the Solar Panel Network spoke to Council requesting their support for a zone change to allow solar panels at a business on Reid Woods Dr.. Apparently municiapl "points" via municipal approval of these projects are now a necessary component to the process. While the REA or Renewable Energy Act exempts green projects from considerable municipal oversight such as the Planning Act; nevertheless municipal support will help these green applications along on their way to the OPA or Ontario Power authority. Coincil made the zone change hence helping this project along.

The next Delegation was made by Rick Stroobosscher who wanted to know in detail Council's rationale for accepting the Jigs Hollow Pit Settlement. Specifically he wanted to know how the Settlement helped the rest of Woolwich residents as Council has publicly stated. The answer was a tag team response, back and forth between Councillor Bowman and Dan Kennally of Woolwich Staff. They claimed that they had achieved for all residents a couple of precedents such as a partial sunset clause and that they came close to a vertical zoning clause. If indeed they had achieved an outright sunset clause and an outright vertical zoning clause it would have been an impressive achievement; but they did not. Apparently the applicant instead of ignoring Council when they decide to go below the water table now have to inform Council that they are breaking that major promise to the community. Secondly the sunset clause does not put a maximum ten or fifteen year deadline on ending and rehabilatating the pit. It seems to ensure however that the usual games of leaving pits idle and then only hauling a few loads out per season is avoided. The last point by Councillor Bauman was interesting. He claims that Council's (ie our) $50,000 donation to the paving of Jigs Hollow Rd. will actually save Woolwich residents money as the Township will no longer have to pay for regular grading and maintenance of the road after paving. Hmmm! I need to think about that one.

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