SaultOnline just received the following email from Bryan Dumansk, Ward 6 Candidate, who is extremely concerned about an elderly couple who are struggling through the development of the old Korah Branch Library site.
I would like to draw your attention to the old Korah Library on Second Line West. Talk to Mr. and Mrs. Benson, an elderly couple at 14 Nichol who live right behind this new building.
Still believe in NIMBY? This couple has been threatened by the Developer and feel they were bullied and intimidated by City Staff and lawyer.
I dropped in for a visit. Mrs. Benson reports that she was warned that the only representation that they could bring to the OMB hearing was her lawyer or only one person to speak on their behalf. If that one person spoke then they would not be able to.
“WE COULD NOT AFFORD A LAWYER. WÈ WOULD HAVE HAD TO REMORTGAGE OUR HOUSE AND WOULD HAVE LOST EVERYTHING,” Mrs. Benson stated.
Meanwhile, the Developer showed up with a lawyer and 8 people from the City all in favour of the project. ” We were overwhelmed and very intimidated by the proceedure,” said Mr. Benson. Mrs. Benson said that Mayor Amaroso asked someone involved with the development if he thought that the property values of the nearby houses would depreciate in value. Assured it would not by the opinion of the man, Mrs. Benson reported that Mayor Amaroso took his word and quickly tossed the neighbourhood petition with 66 signatures into the basket. The 66 signatures on the petition represent 100% of the houses the City stipulated in a letter that they could petition.
The bias opinion of a Developer took precedent in the mind of Mayor Amaroso over the legitimate concerns of the citizens. Variances were changed to facilitate the Developer’s wants by the Building and Planning departments. I place the blame on the City planning and the powers that be. Why would a developer not take advantage of City staff that they could manipulate to maximize profit? It is the natue of the business.
The proximity of the building, its height and windows leave absolutely no privacy in the Benson house and yard. Mrs. Benson has suffered several heart attacks because of the stress endured. If this was YOUR parent’s house, what would you do? If your parents were intimidated by the City and Developer, what would you do? Is this the way we treat our senior residents? Don’t get me wrong. I am in favour of development in this City, but not at the expense of the vulnerable Average Joe. It leaves one to speculate on just who the City staff are working for. The tail is wagging the dog and you are paying for it.
Perhaps we should pay more attention to what the effects of bad planning are and not be so concerned about if we have enough election signs hanging on the security fence around the project itself. No offense to Mr. Romano but am I the only candidate who sees this? I invite EVERY councillor elect and those who voted in favour of this development to see 14 Nichol for yourselves.
The term NIMBY is a slick acronym used by people in an attempt to discredit the message and the messenger. Mrs. Benson wanted me to give out her number and address. She has opened her home and wants people, councillors and staff to come by.
She stated, “I WANT THEM TO SEE WHAT THEY HAVE DONE TO OUR HOME AND LIVES.”
Her number is 705-946-4936. The address again is 14 Nichol.
Here is yet another example of City staff and the powers that be bending to the all mighty dollar at the expense of the citizens. I am ready to fight for the people of Wad 6 and anyone else in other Wards who will continue to call a Ward 6 councillor for resolve. Continue to back a fighter!