Monday, April 2, 2012

Update On Public Information Session For Planning and Development

The title of this post says it all. I just got back from tonight's council meeting and it appears that there may be some misunderstanding of the purpose of the information session at 7:00 on Wednesday night.

First thing that needs to be mentioned is that this meeting is not specifically about the Motion Drive Extension project, it may come up but it is not the main purpose.

Secondly, no members of Council will be taking or answering questions from the public. All questions will be handled by subject matter experts which are people who are in the employment of the town. These are the people who know the regulations and the legalities of how and why the town makes certain decisions. Ultimately it is Councils decision when it comes to policy and they either accept and adopt the recommendations from staff or they don't. That is a political decision as apposed to legal and regulatory decisions that staff make. At least that is how I see it.

Anyway to make a long story short, anyone who thought they were going to this information session at the Kinsmen Centre Wednesday night and put questions to Councilors in hopes of effecting a decision on Motion Drive Extension are out of luck. Although all members of Council will be listening and you may be able to sway their decision before the vote at the next Council meeting.

Basically what is going to happen as I understand it is that staff will make a presentation for a period of time, I think 45 minutes and then people will be allowed to ask questions of these experts for another 45 minutes with a 5 minute time limit per person. I can't guarantee that these times I have a totally accurate but that is the impression I got from Councillor Smith tonight.

Just because Councillors are not going to be answering questions directly doesn't mean that this is an exercise in futility, it is far from that. We as citizens can learn a great deal about what is going on first hand with our own ears from the people who know what they are talking. Most of what we hear is second hand information from people who may or may not know what they are talking about, kind of how all the misinformation about this public session got spread in the first place.

I would still encourage anyone who wants to have a say about how development and planning are conducted on our town to come out to the sessions and have it. The only way we can effect change in our town is if we participate in the political process and that means more than just casting a vote every 4 years.

2 comments:

  1. MINUTES PUBLIC COUNCIL MEETING May 2, 2011

    9) Correspondence from Resident concerning The Motion Coastline and Development Agreement.
    10) Correspondence from Resident concerning Motion Estates-Phase 3.
    11) Correspondence from Resident concerning Motion Estates.
    12) Correspondence from Resident concerning Motion Estates.
    13)Correspondence from Resident concerning Motions Estates Development.
    14) Correspondence from Resident concerning Motion Estates Development.
    15) Correspondence from Resident concerning Motion Estates.

    Council discussed Item Numbers 8 – 15 collectively. Council discussed the Municipal Plan - what the Town did in the past with regards to development regulations/open space and accepting ten percent of land for open space vs. cash value. Staff to research cash amounts accepted by the Town on previous developments. It was agreed by Council to hold an information session to the public, and anyone can attend. See motion below.

    167-11 Motion – Deputy Mayor Gallant / Councillor Whitty

    RESOLVED THAT the Town of Torbay hold a public meeting regarding choice before Council of ten (10) percent or cash in lieu of.

    Question called. Motion carried unanimously.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for posting that who ever you are. It is obvious what the intent of the motion was. I guess words do matter, no mention of Motion Drive Estates by name in the motion. Seems like splitting hairs to me

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