"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

Wednesday 20 April 2016


Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "SOCK IT TO ME BABY": 

Please explain how/why development charges would be applied to a renovated Town-owned building. 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 20 April 2016 at 11:10


The Culture  Board is privately incorporated.  Unlike the Library Board, it has the right to conduct affairs behind closed doors. Financial management is the business of the board. Secrets are theirs to keep. 

The facility for the program is a major feature of the operation. 

Similar to St Andrew's College, to build or gut and renovate a building requires permission  from the town No building permit is issued by the town without a development charge being paid. 

Even an expanding retail operation  like Canadian Tire that creates employment and produces revenue for the municipality, pays Cash-in-lieu. 

If Church Street School had been sold to the board, or even title transferred  for a nominal fee , prior to financial commitment to town heritage, liability  for Development charge would have been incurred. 

To realise equity in cost- sharing between municipalities and the Province, assets must be declared 
to be rationalized.

Landlord status is frowned upon by the Province.  It fudges the figures. Municipal income is derived from taxation a  responsibility shared. with the Province. 

Municipalities are expected to divest themselves of property not required for municipal purposes and realise the asset. 

To ensure proper value is received from a sale, to follow the letter of the law, property must be offered for public sale. 

Before the sale is closed , a Bylaw  must be processed to declare the property redundant to municipal purpose. 

A contract for purchase of services is a messy and artificial arrangement. Contrived for the convenience of a politician, namely  the town's Mayor, to accommodate the hopes and dreams of a private citizen by handing over a public facility,rent and maintenance free, with hundreds of thousands of dollars to play with.  

Nothing high-minded or noble, It was and it continues to be purely political. 

The same lack of principle was involved in giving away the Hydro property which was needed and being used for municipal purposes. And would have saved the best part of $26 million dollars for 
re-location and construction of a joint works and parks  facility. 

The same absence compelled relief to St Andrew's College from payment of a Development charge. 

It happened because normal tension between the political and administrative body was not in place. 

Staff , who would  have given Council professional advice were fired or nudged out and replaced by those who understood their jobs depended on providing politically acceptable recommendations. 

It's not corruption per se. 

It's not upstanding professional performance  either. 

It's a shameful, degrading, ongoing  and horrendously expensive game of trivial pursuit. 


Anonymous said...

Are you advocating that the Town should sell the former Church Street School?

Anonymous said...

Levying a development charge against a building that does not increase the building's fire, snow removal or any other municipal service is a misguided tax grab by the municipality.

An example. The Yonge Street Canadian Tire store was originally built - can't remember how long ago. Let's say it was 20,000 square feet (I have not idea of the size - just a number). The parking lot is 100,000 square feet. Let's say the owner paid a Development Charge that is supposed to cover municipal services - fire, police, other infrastructure.

A couple of years later, CTC wants to expand the store. The lot has not changed in size. The building envelope is larger but no additional connections to services are required. Guess what, they get dinged for Development Charges. Their expansion did nothing to increase their burden on the Town. They will pay more for other services, hydro, water, gas, etc. but they are hard costs associated with a larger building.

Now CTC is moving to the old Zellers/Target store... do they have to pay DCs there too???

What about the new tenant (if there is one) to the Yonge St CTC? Will they have to pay DCs too? Triple dipping by the Town.

Anonymous said...


Just imagine if you had an "occupation charge" every time a residential property experienced a change in owner or renter.

Aurora would have to construct a large building to hold all its cash.

Anonymous said...

That would be hilarious but, no, that building is a treasure. The current inhabitants are much less valuable. I cannot recall any occasion when they said they were going to put money into the town bank accounts instead of the annual drain. Self sufficiency is a concept they will never comprehend.
Still the subject will be hashed once again at budget time. Always one of the last items. With the usual song & dance.

Anonymous said...

The money would be spent or given away before they even recieve it.

Anonymous said...

When you buy property the province get a cash crab called land transfer tax. The liberals promised that gift to municipalies which I'm sure will be around the corner. Lease or rental tax would be interesting or "innovative".

Anonymous said...

Lots of empty storefronts in Aurora. Having a restaurant here is deadly.

Anonymous said...

With CTC moving to Bayview, the future of Yonge Street will be lawyers, dentists and orthodontists. Anyone living west of Yonge Street will have to trek across town for everything.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the 'spas,' 07:23!