Monday, January 23, 2017 10:00 am ·  2 Comments
I’ve read some of the negative remarks that have been written about getting rid of Glen Abbey.
“Golf is for the rich.”
“Golf is dying.”
“Millennials don’t play golf.”
However, this is more than just a Golf Course we are considering. It is a one more time that developers are trying to decide what is best for Oakville and its residents. Yes, private property owners have rights; however, Clublink and its true owner Morguard Corporation (one of Canada’s largest integrated real estate companies) knew right from the start that Glen Abbey is home to the Canadian Open. It is one of the most Iconic Golf Courses in Canada which they boast about online. So why do they want to change it, because there is a great deal more money turning the land into housing.
On January 30, 2017 ClubLink/Morguard Developments is forcing a 10 day hearing in front of the Ontario Municipal Board. And as residents, we will have to pay for the privilege to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Even if ClubLink loses the appeal we still have to pay. Here is the Town of Oakville Glen Abbey Update provided by Mayor Rob Burton.
Why is this ludicrous?
Every 5 years Oakville has to review our land use study commonly referred to as “Livable Oakville“. This is done because the province has mandated growth, which municipalities must adhere to called “Places to Grow“. So the Town of Oakville, with thousands of hours of work and countless public meetings, must provide a plan to meet these new provincial targets. The plans then MUST be approved by the province.
Yes, “Livable Oakville” is a provincially approved plan.
However, the quasi legal Ontario Municipal Board is allowed to over-ride OUR provincially approved plan, and we get the privilege to pay for defending an approved plan. So basically a provincial body is fighting the province with our property taxes.
Before you decide to blame Kathleen Wynne, the Ontario Municipal Board has been in place since 1932. So this is not a Conservative, Liberal, or NDP political debate. There are good reasons for the OMB to exist; however, over-ruling Provincially approved plans shouldn’t be one of them. Municipalities are not trying to destroy the OMB, but rather have its energy diverted to better use. If you want to know what the municipalities are suggesting Mayor Rob Burton did an excellent Op Ed for the Toronto Star called Can the OMB be fixed enough to be saved?
So what can you do?
You can attend the hearing, and get approved to speak. However, the OMB is only going to consider opinions of accredited specialists. They interpret the Ontario Planning Act. What needs to be done is a concerted effort by Oakville along the lines of C4CA, that stopped the proposed Gas Power Plant. The community must rally its finest and most influential citizens to protect our town.
Oakvillians reach out to your residents associations as well as the Oakville Chamber of Commerce and bring pressure to bare on the politicians who are allowing the OMB to go unchecked. Mayor Rob Burton and his fellow councillors are doing all they can to advocate; MPP Kevin Flynn agrees that having our town constantly in battle with the OMB is a bad use of resources.
Attorney General of Ontario, Bill Mauro, Chris Ballard, ClubLink, Glen Abbey Golf Course, Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Morguard Corporation, Ontario Municipal Board, Ontario Planning Act, Places to Grow, Toronto Star, Yasir Naqvi