"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Tuesday, 8 December 2015


Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "SHARING IS GOOD.....I THINK": 

It was maddening to watch. The Town knew they would lose the OMB. They funded it anyway. I believe it cost $1 million + court costs. Who wants to bet council will fund  this? 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 7 December 2015 at 21:32


I wouldn't bet Council will accept the offer to purchase the golf course $98.1million. 

I understand however why  some residents surrounding the gold course think they should. 

Although it costs more ,it's actually  the same principle  to buying the school site on Mavrinac.
The town went to court to force the developer to sell that  land. There was no municipal need forthe land  but those neighbours didn't  want it to be developed either. 

Former Councillor John Gallo knocked on doors and told people it should be a park . That was all they needed. He organized the lobby, so to speak, and  one after the other, Councillors  jumped on the  bandwagon and made it happen. 

The town paid what it cost and were applauded for so doing.

Like the indoor tennis facility. Almost  a million a year buys culture from a self-appointed organization in a town-owned  and maintained facility. 

Why shouldn't tennis players, who may also come from all over the place have similar  

A million dollar baseball field  was built because of desperate need. Turns out there aren't enough local ballplayers in town so the King club joins the Aurora Club to make it more viable and get free use of facilities paid for by Aurora taxpayers, not King.

It makes sense therefore... with an election in the offing and  some Councillors assuring residents of their willingness to acquire the golf club as a park, that is the direction it would go., 

The developer,seeing no resolve on Council's part to do otherwise, has brought the matter to a head and offered to sell at market value. Though it does appear the Ratepayers  may be the intended potential purchasers. Not likely but that's how the conversation was reported. 

The  town has the Mavrinac land, Hallmark Card land, the drill shed , the old library  the old firehall , serviced employment lands at the 404 ,debenture debt on the Stronach Centre and the Joint Works and Parks Facility which I hear  is millions over budget and Council  wants to slow down development for which development charges though not yet collected, have already been spent. 

We also have a ten million dollar property on the Industrial Parkway but we've tied that up in a thirty year lease with the Federal Department of National Defense. We don't even get the grant in lieu of taxes because we own the property. Same thing with the drill shed. Revenue forfeit. 

The question is, where would the money come from to buy the golf club for the surrounding residents who have the same right to be indulged as anyone else in town?

I mean, where does it all end? 


Anonymous said...

I am actually pleased that you are out of this in a way , Evelyn. You can be objective and my stomach doesn't take such a beating on council nights.
I agree that this council might go for the Highland purchase, even if they do not know what to do with Mavrinac and other properties they already own. They have set themselves up for this with precedent and their own rhetoric. Abel is on
record wanting to build land purchases and even Gaertner has been courting Highland residents because there appeared
to be no downside,. It did not look like such a goofy thing could happen, Now Highland has called their bluff.
Good drama. I should add that I do live next to Highland and still believe the town should stay clear of this
potential money swamp.

Anonymous said...

It will end at the OMB. And the Town will fund the losing battle, just like Newmarket. The Town will probably come up with a counter offer or try to purchase a portion of land instead of all of it. The Developer will say no, and off to the OMB we go!

Anonymous said...

But we have to go thru those expensive motions in order for council to show " we care ".
History repeats itself from Newmarket but no one wants to know.
Heaven forbid at the closed meeting tonight, someone mentions the inevitable outcome of the posturing.
They had better not be using the Hydro Fund to finance this nonsense.

Anonymous said...

Mavrinac land was purchased in 2015 based on 2007 pricing (less than $500,000 per acre) for a total cost of $2.47 million. Price matters. Residents were also lied to by the developer in Mavrinac and actually paid more to the developer based on the developer's false advertising and documentation. The developer has no contract with the Town or the residents in the Highland case. There is no "price advantage" on acreage by holding the developer to its contract (as it does not exist). The Town does not have to fight off the developer to show others that it will hold those who enter into contracts with it that it has a backbone in the Highland case (again, because there is no contract to enforce). Additionally, the developer did not profit directly from the surrounding residents in this case based on its false advertising. Mavrinac is not a fair precedent for the Highland situation.

Anonymous said...

PS - you will recall ALL of council would likely NOT have purchased the Mavrinac land if the developer got to choose its price (as in, if there were no contract giving the Town a signficant price advantage) ...

Anonymous said...

Anyone who believes Cllr Gaertner wrote that long motion on highland herself probably believes in pixies too.

Anonymous said...

You ask where the money would come from to buy the golf course lands. That would be us the taxpayers. But it's not going to happen. Those who think an approximate $100M piece of land will be a dandy dog walk are not being realistic. It will be developed. And I am sure the developer will be reasonably accommodating: less density here in return for more towns or condos there.

Town staff know how the OMB will deal with this. I hope they are able to convince politicians.

Anonymous said...

No convincing needed. They all know. I'm just waiting for the next act in this performance. Should be good one.

Anonymous said...

In the meantime, it is a super dog walk. Of course it always was whenever there were no golfers. Once they
quit for the year, it was open day, all day. I figure we have a few years left because construction crews keep
the same kind of hours,
I am waiting for the howl when the first tree gets cut down.........