OMB striking down zoning bylaw could have major implications

Written by  Wednesday, 21 February 2018 10:55
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Lining up for free burgers and dogs for Family Day at arena Lining up for free burgers and dogs for Family Day at arena

South Frontenac won’t be appealing an Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) Ruling that struck down its Zoning Bylaw (Bylaw 2016-36) in its entirety earlier this month, Council decided at its regular meeting Tuesday night in Sydenham.

Emerging from a closed meeting with its legal representation, Council tendered a motion to appeal the OMB ruling but it was defeated 5-4 (Coun. Norm Roberts, Mark Schjerning, Ron Sleeth, Ross Sutherland and Mayor Ron Vandewal voted against in a recorded vote).

In the short term, Township staff will be scrambling to find answers for residents wanting things like demolition permits, building permits and such but the longterm implications might be anybody’s guess.

“From a staff perspective and a big picture point of view, the township will revert to the previous language of the zoning bylaw,” said CAO Wayne Orr. “But staff will not be able to apply is as it has been for the past 14+ years.

“This is not the same as saying we will revert back to the way it was.”

The main point for the OMB ruling pertains to language that effectively prevented owners of grandfathered properties close to waterbodies from rebuilding and/or renovating, even in the event of such a building being destroyed by a natural disaster. It would certainly appear that owners can now again rebuild within the same footprint.

The hearing cost the townships $46,464, which Sutherland felt was excessive.

“That cost seems high for two days as we had another two-day hearing that cost $25,000 and the Hartington subdivision hearing cost $100,000 for nine days,” Sutherland said.

“What will the process be for explaining this (what the rules are now) to the public,” said Coun. John McDougall. “It’s still confusing to me.”

Orr said that they would endeavor to inform the public but first they needed to have a meeting of the Corporate Services Committee to determine exactly what the ramifications of the ruling actually are and how the Township will apply them.

Shooting range application withdrawn
Council had no comments on an email dated Feb. 14 in which Steve Saunders withdrew his request for a private shooting range on his Scanlan Road property. Saunders said another opportunity has presented itself “to fire any class of firearm legally.”

Desert Lake noise exemption
Council formally approved four dates suspending the noise bylaw from 7:30pm to 10:30pm in which “amplified music” would be allowed at the Desert Lake Campground this summer.

Coun. Ross Sutherland said he hoped that the township would take the opportunity to convey the “context of the motion” to the new owners of the property.

“Our planning department had a list of things they were going to do to work with the campground but they didn’t do them,” Sutherland said.

Mayor Ron Vandewal agreed that township representatives should work things out with the campground owners because of past incidents.

“I want it to work for them,” Vandewal said. “But they need to know there are consequences to some actions.”

The 70 cent solution
Dep. Mayor Pat Barr noted that there have been “a couple” of incidences where $0.70 has been invoiced for the purchase of single pens, asking if that was the most efficient way to conduct business.

“I think they just put those in there to see if you’re reading the accounts payable,” joked Mayor Ron Vandewal.

Over 1,000 served
While nobody actually took attendance at Monday’s Family Day gathering in Piccadilly, Coun. Norm Roberts reported that they went through over 500 hot dogs and 500 hamburgers.

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