The Oro-Medonte ORV Debacle
Letter to the Editor from Allan Baker, Oro-Medonte
It seems that the thick fog which prevented Oro-Medonte Council from understanding the Off Road Vehicle By-law that they approved has finally cleared away and Staff have captured in writing the convoluted document.
Those who attended the Council meeting or who watched live streaming of it on the township website – www.oro-medonte.ca – Watch Council Meetings Online, witnessed bureaucratic bungling at its worst.
I offer this metaphor of the situation for your amusement: Upon the insistence of a single person, speaking on behalf of a small group of pleasure seekers, the Captain and Crew of the good ship Oro-Medonte took their residents on a cruise against their will. Shortly after departing the ship became engulfed in a heavy fog and lost direction. The same small voice assured the Captain that he knew the way and that it was safe. The Captain and some Crew members decided to forge ahead, again ignoring the loud protests of many residents and the fact that they were placing the ship itself at risk. When the fog cleared it became obvious that those who were then most in danger were the Captain and Crew, as the ship was heading for a huge waterfall called the Oro-Medonte Municipal Election 2018.
Council’s ORV debate on the taxpayer dime was a ridiculous performance which combined the 3 Stooges with some of Stephen Leacock’s infamous characters. The outcome, however, is no laughing matter as the By-law passed splits the township into two pieces; one protected from the intrusion of ORVs on municipal roads and the other allowing riders full access to the roadways under the guise that they are travelling to a non-existent trail network in the County Forests. In simple terms the By-law allows ORVs to use township roadways in 3 of 5 Wards, between specific hours and dates, and on a one-year trial basis starting Aug 7, 2018.
Although there is no written agreement, the ORV spokesman suggests that ORVrs will self-regulate through a network of road wardens who will report By-law offenders to the township and in turn to the OPP. Proper enforcement is assured to be difficult if not impossible given the area involved and allocation of OPP officers. The residents’ petition of opposition and deferral request were ignored. Make your voice count this time by VOTING in October.