By Patricia O’Driscoll

As a first step in fulfilling its election promise to reestablish Tiny’s economic growth and commercial tax base, lost in the re-structuring fiasco by the previous Hastings-led Council, the incumbent Council acted quickly to secure ownership of a significant parcel of land in the Concession 8 area.

The 150 acre parcel was purchased for $235,000 for municipal purposes – industrial, commercial and other municipal objectives. Following procedural advice from Tiny’s lawyer, negotiations began in mid-May, 1995, and by mid-June Council passed By-Law 9550 confirming the purchase in accordance with requirements of the Municipal Act.

Mayor Lancia talked about the Council’s political commitment relative to this land purchase.

“We are for economic growth and development in this municipality. This Council has taken and will take steps to carry through those promises to the people. This Council inherited the detrimental results of the former Council’s restruturing give-away to Midland and Penetanguishene and consequent loss of revenue assessment. These actions of the former Council left the Township of Tiny in a precarious financial situation and hardship. This is not the time to use inappropriate caution in rebuilding the financial health and well being of Tiny. Rather, it is a time to use appropriate imagination and responsible action to rebuild the economic health of Tiny Township.

“We’re committed to this and we shall work to see it happen. In 5, 10 or 25 years from now, the people of this municipality will be glad that this Council embarked on a course to rebuild Tiny’s financial base, to keep everyone’s municipal taxes as low as possible.

As a Council, we are an united on this!”

Council confirmed that public meetings will be held to receive input from the community when the development process begins. Provincial regulations will guide development.

The Site the acquired land is situated immediately north of Huronia Airport and southeast of a 50-acre area where the Tiny Works Yard is located. Provincial regulations require that within 500 meters of any closed dump site certain procedures must be followed. The Works Yard, which opened in 1991, is in proximity to the closed Pauze dump site. Development of the Works Yard followed provincial regulations then and, development of the 150 acre parcel will also follow provincial regulations.

Hastings Council Supported Rezoning: In 1989, an application was submitted to rezone the parcel to “light industrial commercial”. At that time, the Ministry of Natural Resources is on record that it had no objection to the change of use to light industrial commercial. Shortly thereafter, the applicant’s personal plans changed and he abandoned the application to rezone. There was no involvement with the Ministry of Environment because the application was withdrawn and the interests of all Provincial Ministries ceased, as the public record shows.

In 1993, another application to rezone the site for a Construction Equipment School was submitted. The previous Council headed by then Mayor Ross Hastings favoured its development and approved rezoning the parcel to “light industrial”. On February 10, 1993, the Hastings, Barrie, Maurice, etc. Council voted 5-0 to rezone the site to “light Industrial”. The process was fast tracked and, five weeks later, on March 17, 1993 a public meeting was held and thereafter Council voted 5-0 to approve the zoning change to “light industrial”. At that time, the zoning change was subject to the same Ministry of Environment policy guidelines as will affect the current rezoning.

The Construction Equipment School eventually located in eastern Ontario and, as agreed upon by the applicant, if the School did not chose to locate in Tiny, the land would be rezoned back to Rural. That was done; “Rural” is the present zoning.

The present Council anticipates full public support based on its elected mandate to rebuild Tiny … Then, as now, the zoning change was and is subject to the same Ministry of Environment policy guidelines.