Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Three Stooges... "classic"....

I doubt this will be the end of the road for the land the trailer park was on but I wish it was the end of the road for Councillors Tweel, Bernard and MacDonald for the foolishness that continues to come out of their mouths... I expected as much from Tweel and Bernard but I would have thought Councillor MacDonald would have had enough clues to stay away from this silliness and at the very least away from the other two... simply put MacEachern Holdings owned some land that was eligible under the current bylaws to be rezoned and when the original application was made and it met all the bylaws requirements it should have been approved then and there as a fundamental "right to build"..... but that didn't happen as the City turned it down originally (against the recommendations of City planning staff) and it wouldn't matter if IRAC was there or not as ultimately the Supreme Court would have struck down the City's decision and given MacEachern Holdings his "right to build" anyway (and that’s exactly what the City’s solicitor told Council)... and now the Mayor is trying to blame his leadership mistakes on IRAC so he's going to call the Province... what a joke... the Mayor and Council should be looking for developers with property to rezone that would allow manufactured housing (trailers) so that these and others like them would have a place to go... and maybe a call to Mr. MacEachern and offering the City’s apology for the past and support for his new development would be a good move as his new proposed development will bring new jobs, investment and a stronger tax base for the City of Charlottetown ... the City has to start to "welcome business development" and not chase it away...
End of road for trailer park
The Guardian
Residents of the Idlewheels Trailer Park may have won over the hearts of Charlottetown city councillors, but it wasn’t enough to stop their eviction from the capital city trailer park. An order by the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission (IRAC) forced councillors on Tuesday night to hand Ken MacEachern and his company, L & A MacEachern Holdings, the rezoning he long awaited. That rezoning had initially been rejected by city council but was later appealed to IRAC. The commission overturned the city’s decision. Now, Charlottetown city council is calling for a review of IRAC. But for Lana Baglole, a resident of Idlewheels, that review will come too late. She is the process of putting her trailer up for sale. Two trailers have already been moved, two others are for sale. There were 19 trailers in the park which need to be moved to make way for new apartment complexes. “It’s time for everybody to move on,” Baglole said, after hearing about council’s decision Tuesday night. Last month, the residents launched a further appeal in front of IRAC. A decision is expected at the end of October, but Baglole said she doesn’t expect much will change. Coun. David MacDonald launched a passionate 13-minute discussion about the future of IRAC, saying he has concerns for the residents of Idlewheels but also for the process that unfolded. He questions whether an unelected and unaccountable board should be able to overturn a decision by an elected city council. “We did what we were supposed to do,” said MacDonald. “We held our public meetings, we listened to the input (of residents) and at the end of the day we took a decision in good faith.” Coun. Mitchell Tweel called for a complete review of IRAC and its mandate. “The whole process was flawed in terms of the way IRAC has handled it,” said Tweel. “This is a classic case in point where you have unelected officials that are not elected by the people, that are not accountable to the people and are not responsible to the people.” But Coun. Kim Devine, who is the head of city planning, said while she has empathy for the people of the Idlewheels trailer park, she cautioned that the city was given a legal opinion that it must abide by the IRAC order. “While we have great compassion for what will happen to those residents, we have voted against this, we are on record as being opposed to this application for rezoning but as elected officials we are legally obligated to follow through on this rezoning order.” Coun. Rob Lantz added: “We have a legal opinion that we could be held, as a city council, in contempt of an order.” In an interview following the vote, Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee said he realizes council was forced into approving the rezoning, but he remains bothered by the decision. He said he will be contacting the provincial government immediately to ask that role of IRAC be reviewed. “In all the years I’ve been here at City Hall, this is the first time in my memory that I can recall that IRAC blatantly disregarded the position of the elected body and that really concerns me,” said Lee. “If IRAC says the city has followed its rules, it has followed provincial legislation, I don’t think IRAC should have the authority to override a decision of council. It’s as simple as that.” Despite the threat of legal action, three councillors voted against the rezoning including MacDonald, Tweel and Terry Bernard. The other seven voted for the rezoning. Baglole said it’s the end of the road for Idlewheels residents. If the IRAC appeal is unsuccessful, as she expects, the only other option is to appeal to the Supreme Court. “I can’t afford a lawyer. We can’t afford a lawyer.”

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