Councillor Rosanna DeFrancesca statements from Public Hearing – September 17, 2019

By October 8, 2019 October 29th, 2019 City of Vaughan, MIchael Tibollo, MPP

The Ratepayers association has been hearing a lot of questions about the outcome of the Public Hearing on September 17th, 2019.  Specifically what were the action items that Councillor Rosanna DeFrancesca spoke to at the end of the meeting.  We’ve decided to post the last part of the Public Hearing which specifically has the Councillor speaking.  We’ve also provided a synopsis of the Councillors statement.

  1. The Council endorsed staff and regional council to attend the community events around the Velmar Property Development.
  2. Councillor DeFrancesca recognizes that there is a serious issue with traffic and congestion and that Council has to do better by the community.  The Mayor has created a number of Task Forces to address issues.  Councillor DeFrancesca herself will be heading up the task force that will be looking at Traffic and Infrastructure in the community.
  3. The Councillor confirmed that there are No current applications for development at the Astona Plaza or the Starbucks Plaza.
  4. Councillor DeFrancesca has NOT made any decision on this application.  Neither for or against it. She stated that we need to follow the process. She has stated that she needs to hear all sides and has to have a full discussion around this development.
  5. The Councillor took offence to the letter from the Minister of Housing Steve Clark to our MPP, Michael Tibolo.  The letter can be read in its entirety here.  In the letter the Honorable Steve Clark states that the Municipality decides on what is to to be built.  He also stated that its is up to the municipality to ensure that what is built is in character with the surrounding community.  Councillor DeFrancesca stated that regardless of the decision that is made by council it can be overturned by the province through LPAT and therefore it is ultimately out of their hands.
  6. The Councillor stated that she wanted to work together with the community but that the community has to understand all the risks (ie: that LPAT may overrule any decision made).
  7. The Councillor invited the community to reach out to her if they have any question and she would happily respond.

So the Councillor did have some valid points.  However, it is the City of Vaughan Council’s job to listen to its constituents.  Regardless of how LPAT and the province deals with things, it is up to Council to vote on the Velmar Development on its merits and all its warts.  It is currently in violation of a number  of city by-laws.  It does not fit the character of the community.  It sets a wrong precedence for future developments in the community.  It is unwanted by the community.  Our expectation is that the City of Vaughan work with the community and reject this proposal based on these issues. If the developer decides to appeal this to LPAT then it is the responsibility of both the City of Vaughan and the community to fight it at the LPAT.   At that point we move our battle to LPAT.

Let us know what you think.