SWANSEA AREA RATEPAYER’S ASSOCIATION
MINUTES OF MEETING, Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Present: Louis Gris, Nicholas Singh, Chris Korda, John Meijer, Bill Roberts, Merle Hudson,
Ed Gaigalas, George Dubauskas, Kate Lawson
Regrets: David Fleming, Frances Labelle
1. CALL TO ORDER AND DECLARATION OF CONFLICTS OF INTEREST:
The meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm, with no conflicts of interest.
2. AGENDA AMENDMENTS & APPROVAL:
The Agenda for January 17, 2006, was approved as amended upon motion by Bill Roberts,
seconded by Merle Hudson, and carried.
3. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The Minutes of December 13, 2005 were amended and then approved upon motion by Bill Roberts,
seconded by Nick Singh, and carried. The amendments included the following: 1) a correction to the Treasurer’s Report [Fund-raiser 2005 = $828.00], and 2) comments re planning for the All Candidates Meeting. Due to lack of communication among volunteers, Merle Hudson was inconvenienced by arriving to do a job only to find the job had been completed earlier. In future, she said, details of group work should be reviewed and confirmed.
4. EXECUTIVE REPORTS
Louis Gris and John Meijer reported a total of four renewals to date. Moneys will be deposited.
The report was approved upon motion by Merle Hudson, seconded by Ed Gaigalas, and carried.
Louis Gris has received an additional $80.00. He expects to receive the Village Players’ invoice for $500.00 in the next month. After expenses the net profit is $908.00, instead of $828.00.
The report was approved upon motion by Merle Hudson, seconded by Nicholas Singh and carried.
c) Treasurer’s Report:
SWANSEA AREA RATEPAYERS ASSOCIATION
(prepared JAN 17, 2006)
BEGINNING BALANCE 839.49 Dec 13
plus: memberships, fundraising 942.00 Dec 16
less: chq – L Gris 12.05 Dec 19
less: chq – J Meijer 74.37 Dec 19
less: chq – CORRA 500.00 Dec 23
plus: interest 0.01 Dec 30
ENDING BALANCE 1,195.08 Jan 17
ING Business Investment Savings Account
BEGINNING BALANCE 5,208.03 Dec 13
plus: Dec interest 12.16 Dec 31
ENDING BALANCE 5,220.19 Jan 17
Petty Cash 1.12
TOTAL $ 6,416.39
Fund-raiser 2000 $1,150.00
Membership Secretary Float $ 50.00
The report was accepted upon motion by John Meijer, seconded by Bill Roberts, and carried.
Louis Gris reported expenses of $231.42.
The expenses were accepted upon motion by Ed Gaigalas, seconded by Bill Roberts, and carried.
5. CURRENT MATTERS
a) New Members and Guests:
There were no new members. Louis Gris welcomed one guest, Mr. Wade Hillier, who introduced himself. He is a Ward 13 resident who is considering a run for councillor in the upcoming Municipal Elections. He has come to listen and learn about local issues, from SARA’s perspective.
Louis Gris reported that the January Newsletter has gone to all old and new SARA members. Bill Roberts is asking for volunteer writers, to prepare the April/May newsletter, as he may not be able to do the issue which comes out prior to the AGM.
The date will depend upon availability of a guest speaker. In order of preference, choices include the following: 1) Gerard Kennedy, 2) someone associated with the City Preservation Team, 3) John Sewell.
Ed Gaigalas and Nick Singh will inquire and set a date.
d) SARA Meeting with Councillor Saundercook:
Almost one year ago, following this meeting, at which minutes were taken, Louis Gris requested a copy of the minutes. None have been provided. Nick Singh will inquire about organizing another meeting, among other items to follow.
e) Adopt a Block:
Since the City has not made contact with SARA, it is assumed that the program has been cancelled.
Regarding the new prototype recycling bins, located at Windermere and Bloor and at the Armadale Subway, there was discussion, with negative criticism, by those who have seen them. The city is asking for feedback.
Nick Singh moved that Merle Hudson write a letter, in support of redesigning the bins. The motion was seconded by Kate Lawson, and carried.
f) Massage Parlours: Monitor.
The City is required to and is in process of doing an environmental assessment.
Nick Singh reported that The Village Newspaper carried a summary statement by Councillor Bill Saundercook to the effect that he prefers a roundabout at the base of the South Kingsway.
h) Hydro Poles:
Bill Roberts reported that the poles have been sold. From now on, Toronto Hydro will do repairs.
Item is closed.
Bill Roberts reported that he has not seen any further reports, but expects a City report to come back to Planning and Transportation.
j) Storage for SARA at the Town Hall:
Nick Singh has obtained the contract from City Archives. Louis Gris will have it signed and sent to the archives.
k) Municipal Property Assessment Corporation: Closed
l) East Side of Walkway from Willard Ave to Willard Gardens:
Nick Singh said he had not received a response from Councillor Saundercook’s office, but will inquire.
m) Alcohol and Gaming Meeting: Queens Pasta:
Nick Singh reported that the hearing was held January 16, 2006. The owner had argued that he has lost business, due to forced 10:00 pm closing of his patio. (This patio is unique in that it extends into the neighbourhood and is one of the largest in the area.) Nick said that no change of circumstances had occurred to warrant closing at 11:45 pm, to serve alcohol on the patio. The restaurant will have open hours the same as for other similar restaurants, except for the patio.
n) All Candidates Meeting:
Louis Gris reported that this was a great success, with good turnout and good order, thanks to efforts of Nick Singh and Bill Roberts. Ed Gaigalas suggested SARA set an early October date for a similar meeting in advance of City Elections.
o) OMB Reform: Monitor
Bill Roberts reported there will be changes to the Planning Act, especially the definition of “application”, to counteract the practice of making many revisions, during and/or after the hearing date has been set.
p) Governing Toronto Advisory Panel:
There is a 350-page report on the New Toronto Act. George Dubauskas reported that the wording appears weak. Regarding the need for transparency and accountability, it has no guts.
Bill Roberts moved that George Dubauskas, Louis Gris and Nick Singh prepare a written deputation to the Ontario Provincial Parliament, and to circulate the draft, if practicable, among SARA executive for comments, before the final submission is delivered. Motion was seconded by Ed Gaigalas, and carried.
6. VISION STUDIES
a) Bloor West Urban Design Study:
Nick Singh will contact Councillor Bill Saundercook as to status.
b) Humbergate Study:
Nick Singh will contact Councillor Bill Saundercook as to status.
7. LAND USE ITEMS
a) Toronto Official Plan and Swansea Part II Plan:
John Meijer reported that he had sent the agreed upon money, $500.00 to CORRA.
There will be a public meeting on Urban Design at the St. Lawrence Centre, January 26, 2006.
Bill Roberts reported that at a recent pre-hearing (the City of Toronto / MacDonalds), MacDonalds Restaurants backed off trying to get approval for drive-through restaurants on major roads in neighbourhoods, such as the South Kingsway. He thanked Kate Lawson for preparing a witness statement. There are no changes to the Toronto Official Plan as a result of the settlement.
b) Humber Cinema:
Regarding the Humber Odeon Report, due January 17 or February 7, 2006, Bill Roberts stated that the law requires a 30-day advance public notice. Ed Gaigalas will check the website for the Community Council Agenda and Supplementary Agenda to see if such notice has been given. (Citizens who attended the earlier public meeting and who gave their addresses to the Councillor should also be advised.)
(Humber Cinema cont.) Bill Roberts moved that if this item is coming forward without prior public notice, then SARA should file a protest (in the name of SARG). Motion was seconded by Nick Singh, and carried.
Louis Gris reported that the appellant sent the letter to the OMB. Through mediation approved by the OMB, it was determined that the stairs would not be built with exit at the back of the house. However, the house sold and new owners went ahead and built the stairs, regardless of the Board decision. SARA wrote to the City to complain, but the City also disregarded the Board decision. Louis Gris approached the neighbours (appellant), who are not now concerned. SARA has no right of appeal, so the item is closed.
d) 169 South Kingsway:
Item closed. Chris Korda will provide a copy of the Committee of Adjustment’s ruling for SARA’s records.
e) 25 Woodland Heights:
The OMB decision is that the dormers are OK and the building does not exceed height limit.
(A copy of the OMB decision is needed for SARA records.)
f) 85 South Kingsway:
Mr. William Gerrard, a neighbouring property owner and opponent in this case, appeared as guest, to present to SARA members the results of the December, 2005 OMB decision regarding his appeal. The decision was in his favour. He thanked Bill Roberts for his assistance. Mr. Gerrard also presented copies of the letter to the OMB, written by Councillor Bill Saundercook, prior to the hearing. Bill Roberts suggested that Mr. Gerrard write to Councillor Saundercook and enclose a copy of the OMB decision, with cc to SARA.
Mr. Gerrard, a professional architect, advised SARA members of what he considers to be the strongest tool against poor quality and over development, which is the Heritage Act. It provides for “heritage conservation districts”, that is areas of the city having a specific history, location and/or architectural style, e.g. Deforest and north, Riverside Drive, and The Palisades. Of Toronto’s approximate 150 neighbourhoods, 14 have already been designated.
g) 52 Ellis Park Road
George Dubauskas and Louis Gris attended the COA hearing. The COA granted a slight GFA increase but cut back on the front deck from the proposed 6 m to 3.1 m (2.5 m is permitted). Bill Roberts advises checking their file for possible appeal request.
8. COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS
a) Community Police Liaison Committee:
SARA will need a new representative for the Committee. Kate Lawson has expressed interest.
b) High Park Community Advisory Council:
Merle Hudson said the next bi-monthly meeting is in February, 2006.
c) Swansea Community Recreation Centre & Rennie Park:
Merle Hudson reported as follows. Plans to extend the Recreation Centre have expanded to include a larger pool, day care, increased classrooms and underground parking. Future steps include negotiations with the School Board and the City.
Rennie Park has received a $50,000 donation from Home Depot and Toronto Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, to be used for refurbishing the ice rink, which includes replacing and painting boards and installing an electronic score board.
d) Swansea Memorial Library and Friends of the Library:
George Dubauskas reported that there are on-going informal discussions with the Public Library Board. “Use it or lose it.”
e) Swansea Public School: Nothing until June
f) Swansea Town Hall Board of Management:
Bill Roberts reported that soil has been moved away and a safety railing is coming. Ed Gaigalas reported that the AGM is set for February 21, 2006 – in conflict with SARA meeting. SARA members are urged to attend the AGM. SARA meeting is rescheduled for Tuesday, February 28, 2006, at 7:30 pm.
g) J.T. Bonham Residences:
The AGM is probably February 23, 2006.
h) CORRA: Dealt with under 7.a.
9. ITEMS BEING MONITORED
a) Windermere by the Lake:
REON has committed to providing day care for residents, to be situated in the high rise tower. Its temporary location will be at 356 Windermere Ave, in the Windermere United Church. This facility will be set up by the city and paid for by Reon.
b) Southport Plaza:
d) Context Development: Monitor.
e) Dark Horse (liquor license): No news
f) Humber Cycling/Pedestrian Trail: Monitor til Spring.
h) Humber Bay Treatment Plant and i) Petro Canada Station – 8 South Kingsway:
Louis Gris will ask Ron Braun to pass the files to a SARA member or to close the item.
10. NEW BUSINESS:
a) Front Yard Parking:
Bill Roberts reported that he had attended the meeting held by the City on this very important by-law. He presented summary sheets, and asked for a volunteer to take over the responsibility of monitoring it. By next meeting, he hopes someone will volunteer to write a letter, expressing SARA’s interest and asking to be advised. This person would study the report and then write a more detailed letter.
10. NEXT MEETING: rescheduled to Tuesday, February 28, 2006
11. ADJOURNED: 9:45 PM