S.A.R.A. Executive Meeting Minutes - January 20, 2004


Present:   Ritvars Bregzis, George Dubauskas, Marianne Fenner, Louis Gris, Ron Braun, Nick Singh, Bill Roberts, Merle Hudson, Sybil Wilkinson, John Meijer, Frances Labelle


Absent:     Peter Keefe, Vicki Vancas, Bill Haines


Guests:     Pat Reavy, Denis Beatty, 254 Windermere Ave.

Andre Cotic

Mark Macdonald, Special Assistant to Councillor Saundercook

Present for the latter part of the meeting:

Councillor Bill Saundercook

Nancy MacDonald, Executive Assistant to Councillor Saundercook

Bea Mozdzanowski, Constituency Assistant to Councillor Saundercook


Call to Order and Declaration of Conflicts of Interest:

The meeting began at 7:33 p.m. at the Swansea Town Hall.  There were no declared conflicts of interest.


Approval of Agenda:

                        The agenda was approved as amended upon motion by George Dubauskas, seconded by John Meijer and unanimously carried.


Approval of Minutes:           

Upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by John Meijer and carried, the amended minutes of December 9, 2003 were approved.


1.         Membership Report:

Louis Gris reported that he has received 2 new memberships (1 single, 1 family) for 2004,and gave the membership funds to the Treasurer.  The Membership report was approved upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by George Dubauskas and carried.


2.         Treasurer’s Report:

John Meijer presented the Treasurer’s Report as of January 20, 2004.

Upon motion made by John Meijer, seconded by Frances Labelle and unanimously carried, the Treasurer’s report was accepted.

Expenses - Upon a motion by George Dubauskas, seconded by John Meijer, the Treasurer was authorized to reimburse Bill Roberts, Frances Labelle, and Louis Gris for expenses.  Upon a motion by Louis Gris, seconded by Frances Labelle, and carried, the Treasurer was authorized to provide a cheque for Louis Gris to submit to the Village Players for the cost of the March 4th fundraising event.  Revenue from tickets sold will be allocated to SARA.


3.         Land Use Matters:

a)      258 Windermere –  Pat Reavy and Denis Beatty attended the meeting to advise SARA of their concerns with respect to the renovations that have been done to 258 Windermere.  They advised the meeting that they are encountering difficulties in having a number of their concerns addressed and requested SARA's assistance.  Upon a motion by George Dubauskas, seconded by Merle Hudson, and carried, Frances Labelle was authorized to send a letter to Councillor Saundercook (with a copy to the mayor) outlining the residents' concerns, and requesting that a thorough review of the matter  be undertaken as expeditiously as possible.



b)      1947-1997 Bloor St. W. – Context Development -  Mark Macdonald reported on behalf of Councillor Saundercook that a response is expected soon from the Ministry of the Environment regarding contamination on the site.  The public will be invited to participate in a future meeting.

c)   Windermere by the Lake:– Frances Labelle reported that the Ontario Municipal Board hearing on the developer's appeal of the Committee of Adjustment decision regarding the east site (3 Windermere) will be held on March 4, 2004.  Upon a motion by Merle Hudson, seconded by John Meijer, and carried, Frances Labelle was authorized to retain the services of a planner to assist SARA in its presentation at the OMB hearing.  Frances reported that she and Ron Braun met with Councillor Saundercook, requesting that he make a motion at City Council asking the city to support the Committee of Adjustment decision at the OMB.  She further reported that the developer (John Davies) has requested a meeting with representatives from SARA and RARG, and that Mr. Davies also wishes to invite members of the community who are supportive of the application.  Upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by Frances Labelle, and carried, it was agreed that George Dubauskas, Merle Hudson and Nick Singh  will represent SARA at this meeting.  When Councillor Saundercook joined the meeting later in the evening, he noted that he had discussed the idea of a meeting on this matter with Mr. Davies and that he would be pleased to facilitate it.

Bill Roberts suggested that financial support needs to be raised from condominiums in the adjoining area.  Louis Gris reported that information about this matter is included in the

January newsletter.  It was agreed that extra copies of the newsletter would be distributed to the condominiums in the area.

Frances Labelle informed the meeting that the developer has applied to the Committee of Adjustment for 7 variances for 6 Windermere.  Frances noted that, in total, the effect of the variances was not minor.  A discussion ensued on the proposed variances, and SARA's position on each one.  A  motion was made by Bill Roberts, seconded by Ritvars Bregzis, and carried, authorizing Frances Labelle to write to the Committee of Adjustment stating that SARA opposes these variances, on the grounds that the total variances being proposed are inappropriate and, cumulatively, not minor.  Upon a motion by Frances Labelle, seconded by Ritvars Bregzis, and carried, a Committee consisting of Ron Braun, George Dubauskas, Frances Labelle and Sybil Wilkinson will be formed to meet with the developer if necessary.

d)   Southport Plaza Redevelopment – Bill Roberts reported the City undermined the community's case when the City Planner took the stand and recommended 18 storeys as an acceptable compromise.  In spite of this, the decision contained many conditions that were a direct result of the evidence presented by the community at the hearing.  Bill noted that an 18-storey building with two 16-storey shoulders was approved.  A number of conditions were imposed relating to the site plan and the construction of the development that will mitigate hydrogeological problems and provide a measure of protection for surrounding buildings.  He reported that other conditions include:  commercial space and traffic flow on the site to be redesigned, as well as a minimum requirement for the amount of commercial space, with the development being phased so that commercial space will be built before the residential.  He also informed the meeting that revised plans for the site have been produced.  Frances Labelle stated that she will ask a Traffic consultant to review them.

e)   1900 Lake Shore Blvd. W. (former Meow Club site) – Bill Roberts reported that the OMB approved the developer's plan.  Ron Braun, Merle Hudson and Victoria Masnyk spoke at the hearing, and Frances Labelle made a detailed presentation.  Frances Labelle noted that in the decision the OMB chair's statements sent a message that in order for the arguments of participants in the community to be given equal weight by the OMB, those arguments should



be supported by professionals and expert witnesses.  Frances reported that an article about the hearing will appear in the Gleaner.

f)    Committee of Adjustment – nothing of concern to report.

g)   Municipal Shelters – continue to monitor.

h)   Gardiner Lakeshore Task Force – Bill Roberts reported that the mayor's office recommended the disestablishment of the Task Force.  He further noted that the mayor has asked for a review of this decision.  Upon a motion by Ron Braun, seconded by Frances Labelle, and carried, Bill Roberts was authorized to send a letter to the Policy and Finance committee informing them of SARA's opposition to the disestablishment of the Task Force.

i)    Toronto Official Plan and Swansea Part II Plan –  Bill Roberts reported that Planning and Transportation has directed the Urban Development department to meet with affected Ratepayer groups regarding the Official Plan.  Bill also reported that a settlement was reached regarding the Swansea Part II plan that was agreeable to SARA and RARG, and is subject to Council approval.

j)    Fred Victor Centre/Joyco Station – continue to monitor.  Mark Macdonald reported that Councillor Saundercook will meet with the Executive Director of the Fred Victor Centre.


4.         Liquor Licenses:

a)      Billy Bob/The Fan – Louis Gris asked Mark Macdonald to inform Councillor Saundercook that he has received a letter from Ann Foy requesting SARA's assistance in acquiring information regarding the City's appeal.  Mark Macdonald noted that the councillor was told by the City solicitor that the

appeal will be heard soon, and that information will be sent to the councillor.  Louis Gris requested a copy of information regarding the appeal when it is available.

b)      Dark Horse – Louis Gris reported that the Dark Horse is in the process of getting a new roof.  Nick Singh stated that he would give the information he has on this matter to Councillor Saundercook.  Mark Macdonald informed the meeting that Councillor Saundercook intends to meet with the owner.

c)      Bloom Restaurant (2315 Bloor St. W.) – Louis Gris reported that the owner informed him that the restaurant will be open in approximately 3 weeks.


5.         Humber River:

a)   Humber Cycling/Pedestrian Trail – No report.  Continue to monitor.

b)   Humber Bay Treatment Facility: - No report.  Continue to monitor.


6.         Neighbourhood Issues:

a)      Petro Canada Station – 8 South Kingsway – Frances Labelle reported that she and Ron Braun met with Councillor Saundercook to discuss illegal left turns at the south entrance of the station.

b)      Community Council – Nothing to report.

c)      Traffic calming – Frances Labelle reported that she has asked Councillor Saundercook to investigate the lack of uniformity in the heights for speed humps throughout Swansea.  Merle Hudson reported that she engaged a civil engineering firm to measure the distance between the speed humps on Kennedy Ave., and that their report appears to indicate that the distances do not comply with the City's policy.

d)      Queensway Construction – Construction is complete.  Close item.


7.         Other Organizations:

a)      Community Police Liaison Committee –Merle Hudson reported that she attended the first meeting of this committee, and that the discussion primarily addressed issues such as the objectives of the organization and the number of meetings that would be held.  She stated that she was told she would receive the minutes.  Upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by Marianne Fenner, and carried,

Merle Hudson was appointed as SARA's representative, with Frances Labelle agreeing to serve as alternate.

b)      High Park Citizen's Advisory Committee – Merle Hudson reported that a meeting will be held tomorrow (21/01/04).  She also stated that according to the World 19 website the new name of this organization is the High Park Community Advisory Council, and that a new corporation, High Park Initiatives, has been established to raise funds.

c)      Swansea Historical Society – David Crombie will be speaking on February 4th, 2004.

d)      Swansea Memorial Library and Friends of the Swansea Memorial Library – George Dubauskas reported that he has provided Councillor Saundercook with information, and that the Councillor will address the Toronto Public Library Board regarding hours of operation for Swansea Library.  He also reported that a pre-budget consultation report was submitted at one of the Listening to Toronto meetings.  Upon a motion by George Dubauskas, seconded by Frances Labelle, and carried, it was agreed that SARA will support Councillor Saundercook's submission for an increase in hours of Swansea Memorial Library during the renovations to Runnymede Library.  Merle Hudson stated that she might be available to attend a Toronto Public Library budget meeting.

e)      Swansea Public School – No report.

f)        Swansea Town Hall Board of Management – Louis Gris reported that the Annual General Meeting of the Town Hall board will be held next month.  Upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by George Dubauskas, and carried, Louis Gris was authorized to find a replacement representative to the Town Hall Board of Management from among the Executive members.  Bill Roberts reported that the construction permit for the Town Hall may be delayed for 6 weeks due to the City's failure to secure a permit for street closure to allow the operation of cranes.

g)      Swansea Community Recreation Centre & Rennie Park – Merle Hudson reported that the Special Needs program has been cancelled due to lack of funding.

h)      Confederation of Resident & Ratepayer Associations (CORRA) – Bill Roberts reported that CORRA is dealing with issues relating to the Toronto Official Plan.  He further reported that membership in CORRA is increasing.

i)        World 19 –Louis Gris reported that a formal meeting will take place on February 16th or 17th regarding the formation of a residents' association for the area north of Bloor and asked if any of the Executive wished to attend.  Merle Hudson noted that the World 19 website has information regarding property assessment.

j)        Letter to the Mayor – Ritvars Bregzis reported that he is in the process of gathering feedback from all committee members, and that a draft version will be given to SARA after all the information has been received.  Frances Labelle noted that she has given Ritvars a summary of the projects and issues with which RARG has been involved.  Councillor Saundercook extended appreciation to Frances Labelle, Ron Braun and SARA for all their work.  He stated that he intends to co-ordinate meaningful public meetings involving Ward 13 and city and provincial officials.


8.         Other Business:

a)      Newsletter– Louis Gris reported that the newsletter is in the process of being mailed to members.  He gave copies to all Executive members present at the meeting.

b)      Website – John Meijer reported that the website is up to date with regards to SARA newsletters.  Marianne Fenner stated that she will follow up to ensure that John is provided with correctly revised Executive meeting minutes for the website.  Councillor Saundercook gave the secretary the contact names and telephone numbers regarding market value assessment (see information following the minutes).  After discussion, it was decided not to post market value assessment information on the website, since this information is available through World 19.

c)      Marketing/Fundraising – Louis Gris provided 10 tickets and an advertising flyer to each Executive member for the March 4th Village Players fundraising performance "The Cocktail Hour" by A.R. Gurney.  A flyer will be included with each newsletter.  Upon a motion by Sybil Wilkinson, seconded

 by Merle Hudson, and carried, it was decided that the Marketing Committee investigate the possibility of including advertising in the SARA newsletter.

d)      Annual General Meeting – Louis Gris was directed to contact Mayor Miller regarding a possible date when he would able to attend and address the meeting.


9.         New Business:

a)      City Budget – Councillor Saundercook reported that he and his Executive Assistant have contacted the Library Chief Officer regarding the following compromise in hours for Swansea Memorial Library:  Monday 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Friday 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.  Councillor Saundercook reported that the Listening to Toronto session was the best budget meeting he had ever attended.  Bill Roberts reported that he had also attended the session and noted that while he agreed it was a good meeting, the scheduling (Saturday, Sunday) might have made it difficult for those of some religious faiths to attend.

b)       Section 37 Funds – There was a brief discussion, raised by Sybil Wilkinson, regarding whether the dollar amounts being offered in Section 37 monies in exchange for concessions to developers are far too low.

c)      Second Suites – In response to Merle Hudson's inquiry about the rules and regulations, and SARA's position regarding second suites, Bill Roberts stated that SARA's position is that the proposed inspection system is weak.  This item will be discussed at the next meeting.


10.       Next Meeting/Adjournment:

The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 17th, 2004 at 7:30 p.m.  Upon a motion by Bill Roberts, seconded by George Dubauskas and carried, the meeting adjourned at 9:51 p.m.



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