Megaquarry land part of new aggregate application in Melancthon

 

StradaPlan   Super Portrait

 

Strada Aggregates plans to expand its operations in Melancthon by another 150 acres, including a 50-acre parcel it has purchased from Bonnefield Financial, the firm that acquired the former megaquarry lands from The Highland Companies in 2013. The new lands Strada has proposed for aggregate extraction are highlighted in red. - MHBC Planning

There is a new aggregate application in Melancthon and it includes some of the former megaquarry lands.

Strada Aggregates has filed an application under the Aggregate Resources Act (ARA) to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) seeking approval to expand its existing operations in the township and permit a maximum of 1.25 million tonnes extracted per year.

Strada plans to increase its operation near Dufferin County Road 17 and 4th Line by another 150 acres, which includes a 50-acre parcel it purchased from Bonnefield Financial, the firm that acquired the former megaquarry lands from The Highland Companies in 2013.

 

“It’s just the beginning of a long process,” said Melancthon Mayor Darren White, acknowledging the inclusion of the former megaquarry land may bring back some old memories for residents.

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By Chris Halliday
Published July 28, 2017, Orangeville Banner

MNRF rejects under the water table pit expansion in Mono

Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) has denied St. Marys Cement’s request to expand its pit and extract below the water table near the Orangeville fairgrounds.

In May of 2014, the company filed an application under the Aggregate Resources Act (ARA) relating to the company’s Craig Pit located between the eastern arm of Island Lake and 5 Side Road in Mono.

“Although (St. Marys) has attempted to resolve some of these concerns, there are a number of that remain outstanding,” MNRF regional director Sharon Rew wrote on June 15

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Food, Water Issues Should be Included in 2018 Election Campaign

By Marni Walsh
Orangeville Citizen, March 30, 2017

 

The North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce (NDACT) is asking Ontarians to focus on food and water issues as the politicians begin to gear up for the 2018 provincial election.

The task force is launching a campaign to make sure all politicians seeking election “make the preservation of our valuable farmland and source waters a #1 election priority.”

Alia Jalbert, the new Chair of NDACT and its legacy movement Food & Water First, says, “If there is one thing that has been a human characteristic throughout history, it is ingenuity; the easy path, in many ways, is to take over nice, cleared land for developments, but I am certain, as witnessed in Europe where there is much more reluctance to convert farmland into suburbs, that when that route is removed other ideas will emerge.”

Ms. Jalbert says the most imminent threat to Ontario Farmland, and to Dufferin-Caledon specifically, is “development, in a variety of shapes, outside of already established communities – housing developments, aggregate extraction, and other industrial uses of agricultural land.”

She suggests residents press politicians on questions that focus on the preservation of food and water such as: “What to you consider sustainable growth? Without any political action, how do you see the current trend (virtually no farmland from Markham to Toronto any more) ever ending? What options are there for growth if farmland and environmentally sensitive land are removed from the growth equation?”    

Provincial improvements have been made in recent years, largely due to organizations like NDACT working hard to keep preservation and protection issues in the political forefront.

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The cost of land protection tackled at NDACT meeting

Shirley Boxem, Chair of the North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce (NDACT) opened their Annual General Meeting on July 28 to a crowded hall in the Horning’s Mills Community Centre.

Ms. Boxem noted that the crowd was filled with “friends and supporters” and thanked them for being there. She introduced board members and once the minutes and agenda were adopted and financial statement reviewed the meeting adjourned to focus on the Coordinated Land Use Planning Review Draft.

This review only occurs every ten years, and Ms. Boxem stressed, “As we go through policy changes, public opinion does matter.”

She encouraged continued submissions from the community, announcing that 50 per cent of the responses to the review of the Aggregate Resources Act mentioned protection of farm land and water with specific reference to NDACT’s legacy movement “Food and Water First.”

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Last chance coming for public comment on Land Use Draft

Shirley Boxem, chair of the North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce (NDACT), reminded the audience at NDACT’s annual general meeting (AGM) last Thursday, July 28, that the Province’s Co-ordinated Land Use Planning Review only occurs once every 10 years and the last chance for public comment will be September 30th.

Speaking to a crowded hall in the Horning’s Mills Community Centre, Ms. Boxem said, “As we go through policy changes, public opinion does matter.”

She noted that 50 % of the responses to the recent review of the Aggregate Resources Act mentioned protection of farm land and water, with specific reference to NDACT’s  legacy movement Food and Water First.

Keynote speaker Victor Doyle, from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, addressed the Draft and what changes it holds for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, including expansion of protected lands and water under the Green Belt and the Niagara Escarpment Commission.

He advised residents that to control urban expansion, they must identify important water function areas when addressing the government.

Ms. Boxem said she believes “we are in the homestretch, and the mandate of NDACT will be fulfilled in the foreseeable future.”

However, the evening was not without concern regarding the proposed Land Use Planning legislation. In response to a question from the audience, Mr. Doyle confirmed that the legislation did not address or change anything about aggregate applications – that remained “status quo.”

Mulmur Councillor Janet Horner, Dufferin’s representative on the Niagara Escarpment Commission (NEC) and Executive Director of the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance, expressed serious concern about the financial repercussions for Dufferin posed by an increase in protected NEC lands proposed in the Land Use Planning Review Draft.

She said “conservation land tax rebates” to taxpayers living in the Niagara Escarpment protection areas could grow to a $800,000 annual loss to Mulmur Township, making it very difficult for the municipality to fund necessary services for residents without significant land tax increases.

Ms. Horner also predicted financial consequences for areas of Melancthon and said the County of Dufferin could take a financial hit of $1000,000 in tax rebates should the expansion go through.

She said Mulmur already provides high protection for the escarpment and questioned the benefits of the expansion to the citizens.

Dufferin’s lower-tier municipalities needed to “take a close look at this (planned expansion of the Niagara Escarpment) and make sure that compensation is provided.”

Mr. Doyle responded that he was certain this concern would “get the attention of politicians.” 

In terms of climate change, Mr. Doyle stressed, “What we do locally effects us globally. … Canada has already paved over one-third of its agricultural land and must start planning hundreds of years into the future.”

He praised NDACT saying, “Food and Water First has sent a resounding message across the province” and the community “should be very proud.”

Public submissions on the Coordinated Land Use Planning Review Draft are due no later than September 30th.

By Marni Walsh
Published in the Orangeville Citizen, Aug. 4, 2016