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Simcoe County, Springwater Township reach deal, OMB hearing adjourned

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In Agriculture
Oct 24th, 2016
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AWARE Network News

The Ontario Municipal Board hearing into the bonus Chiarelli population allocations to be deployed in Springwater came to an abrupt end today, after Simcoe County lawyers presented a letter detailing an agreement reached with the Township of Springwater. They noted that neither the Midhurst Ratepayers Association nor the Province of Ontario had any involvement in the agreement.

This is the letter: simcoe-county-to-springwater-township

There was some perfunctory testimony from two planners, one on behalf of the county, the other on behalf of the developers, to the effect that Official Plan Amendment 38, the Midhurst Secondary Plan, represents good planning and conforms with all relevant legislation and policies.

There was a statement by a lawyer representing the Midhurst Ratepayers Association, to the effect that the MRA wanted the record to reflect its objection to the process whereby the agreement was reached and the planners’ testimony put forward. Asked by OMB panellist Chris Conti whether she was asking for an adjournment to allow the MRA to prepare its response to the agreement and the planners’ testimony , the lawyer said no.

The following is the joint news release issued today by the county and the township:

County of Simcoe and Township of Springwater Reach Agreement over Midhurst Development

Following the most recent public statements by the County of Simcoe and the Township of Springwater concerning Midhurst development, further discussions and clarifications have worked to resolve this matter to the benefit of residents and our communities.

In September, County of Simcoe Council had reached an agreement with representatives from the Midhurst developer group for a resolution of the 20,000 Population Allocation program designated under the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. When Midhurst developers had requested more than 6,000 additional population for the Midhurst settlement area, the County worked with developers for a settlement that provided for population allocation of only half that number, together with a series of development conditions.

At the October 17th, 2016 Township of Springwater Council meeting, a review of points of clarification concerning the County’s settlement with the Midhurst Developers Group occurred.

Springwater Council concluded that these points of clarification on the conditions included by the County on the County and developer agreement dealt with their concerns regarding the pace and form of Midhurst development both now and for future development.

These principles include:

– Embedding strict phasing criteria

– Ensuring comprehensive subdivision approval conditions

– Ensuring appropriate density provisions

– Confirmation of a protocol for consultation on any future development proposals for the Midhurst area

These principles ensure the County of Simcoe and Township of Springwater will continue to work co-operatively with respect to the implementation of the Township approved and County modified and approved Official Plan Amendment 38 (Midhurst Secondary Plan) in Springwater Township.

From the County’s and the Township’s perspectives, this agreement now eliminates the need for Ontario Municipal Board hearings and protects many of the existing processes and policies, preserving the County’s right to allocate under the 20,000 Population Allocation Program and the Township’s desire to preserve important controls on Midhurst development.

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Previous coverage

County, developers’ minutes of settlement released at OMB

‘Betrayal!’ County reverses decision, makes deal with Midhurst developers

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