CORNWALL Ontario – Unsurprisingly work recommences at the Trillium Distribution Cornwall Inc. site. Despite rallies, petitions and a clear message to the politician’s our voices have gone unheeded.
At root is Mayor Kilger and Council’s refusal to speak to the issue of the Mayor’s press release which confirmed communication to CFN from Transport Canada; that the Economic Development office in Cornwall was made aware of the lease in June 2013.
City Hall is refusing to answer the very basic question as to who at ED was spoken to and why the heck it wasn’t shared “officially” with council and the public in any subsequent monthly reports to council.
Furthermore why is Mayor Kilger and council allowing the Feds to connect Harbour Divestiture discussions with the Chem tanks? There is no connection. The Harper Government is clearly going against the very clear will of the people of Cornwall Ontario by allowing this to occur.
Resistance over these last few months has withered as well. When media broke a story about the tanks “being allowed” for one year Chuck Charlebois nor Mark A MacDonald specified any actions to be taken.
One candidate for council even said over the phone that the public doesn’t care so why should they?
Despite numerous efforts to find a suitable outcome, the City of Cornwall wishes to inform the community that Trillium Distribution Cornwall Inc. plans to resume work at the site owned by Transport Canada at Cornwall Harbour. The work may resume as early as this week.
Trillium and Transport Canada have entered into a lease for the construction and use of tanks on the site. The City of Cornwall has been and remains opposed to the ongoing use of the Cornwall Harbour for the transportation and storage of calcium chloride. The City has not provided any approval for this project; Transport Canada has maintained that it has sole jurisdiction over development on the lands.
“I am disappointed that Trillium has chosen to not recognize the City’s Interim Control Bylaw,” said Mayor Bob Kilger. “I remain optimistic that a solution exists that will see a permanent end to this activity on Cornwall’s waterfront through the divestiture process.”
The divestiture negotiation process with the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne and Transport Canada has been initiated and is ongoing. The ultimate goal is for the City of Cornwall and the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne to take ownership of the Harbour lands, which would include the site in question.
The City of Cornwall passed an Interim Control Bylaw on December 9, 2013 that prevents the use of the land at Cornwall Harbour for any use other than open space and is in effect for a period of one year. It is intended to give Council and City staff an opportunity to study and subsequently consider adopting different zoning strategies for the area.
Trillium has appealed the Interim Control Bylaw to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB), and it has also filed an application with the Superior Court of Ontario challenging the authority to adopt the Bylaw.
In February, the City issued various “stop work orders” intended to prevent work that is not in compliance with the Bylaw and undertaken without any City building permit. Because work continued, the City served various summons under the Provincial Offences Act, seeking the Court’s action to enforce the orders. The matter is before the Courts, and the first hearing is scheduled for April 15th, 2014.
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