Blair Hampton Estates – a lengthy OMB appeal expected

Blair Hampton Estates – a lengthy OMB appeal expected

By Patricia O’Driscoll

The last undeveloped stretch of shoreline in Tiny Township lies along the northwestern shore of Tiny, in Concessions 20W and 21W. Over the last 4 years, Blair Hampton Estates has presented a development proposal to Tiny Council and sought Tiny’s support. The proposal is for 69 lots to be built on some 222 acres; 16 acres are to be dedicated to the Township including 180′ of shoreline – all within provincial guildelines.

Each year, development becomes more complex and more rigourously scrutinized by a myriad of government agencies and departments including the Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Natural Resources, Ministry of Municipal Affairs, local health authorities, County of Simcoe and the planning department of the Township of Tiny. It is not an easy or quick process.

On October 13, 1993, Tiny Township Council, under the then Mayor Ross Hastings and Deputy Mayor Peter Stubbins, passed by-law 9369 to adopt an Official Plan (OP) Amendment to redesignate land use for the area of Blair Hampton Estates to the “Special Residential” designation.

On December 4, 1993, five (5) appellants filed notice requesting a referral of that OP Amendment to the Ontario Municipal Board. The appellants included then Deputy Mayor Peter Stubbins (appealing a decision of his own Council), two of his colleagues from the township Environmental Advisory Committee (as then composed), an employee of the Ministry of Natural Resources (a Ministry which participates in the development approval process) and a fifth appellant who has since withdrawn his appeal.

In February and March, 1995, Blair Hampton Estates referred all other aspects of the development proposal to the OMB for consideration at the same hearing so that all matters may be dealt with at one time. The other aspects are:

(a) the developers Private Official Plan Amendment – to redesignate the table lands (approximately 70 acres) back to Rural from Special Residential, (b) the zoning Bylaw, and (c) the Plan of Subdivision.

A pre-hearing conference is scheduled before the OMB during December, 1995 and the hearing is scheduled for March 4, 1996.

The present Council has directed the Township solicitor to represent the Township before the Board and to defend a decision reached by the former council on October 13, 1993.

The Tiny Cottager has learned that Peter Stubbins is urging individuals and groups to tell this Council not to send the Township solicitor to the OMB because the presence of a lawyer for the Township will slow things down.’

As the former Deputy Mayor of Tiny Township, Peter Stubbins knows that a municipal council must have representation before the OMB. The Township has an obligation to have a presence before the Board to ensure that proper development standards are adhered to and to ensure that, where development is appropriate and a benefit to the municipality, such development will be approved with the proper conditions and be a benefit to the municipality.

In cases like this, it is traditional that at the end of the day, if development should proceed, that the developer pays the costs of the municipality.

With the developer’s referral to the OMB of all other aspects of the development proposal, it is expected that it could be a lengthy hearing before the OMB.