“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead.
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DAY 71 - MAY 10, 2010

May-10-10

Lorraine Symmes, Lay Witness statement

  • Indicates where the Rockfort drain is situated- comes across from JDCL to Symmes property. Concerned about contaminants coming across to my property.  Drains into the eastern branch of Rogers Creek - lot of amphibians, etc. on my property.
  • Spring 35 on the CBSES- runs from Nov thru to June, sometimes less. It depends on the year.
  • PSW- part of the complex- feeds a lot of the habitat on the property.
  • 6  Butternut trees which are endangered are on my property and we have located 22 trees in the area.
  • I am fortunate to have nesting bluebirds and a great number of turkeys on the property
  • There are also white-tailed deer, herd of about 25. They use NEC as a major corridor.  Use trails to go over to JDCL’s property. Use it as a deer yard in the winter.
  • Bird species of concern: 58 birds listed –total species of concern for CVC were 72.
  • Percentage of total watershed species of concern on the property was 53% and of the CVC local list I have 81% of the CVC species of concern.
  • Habitat has a very rich biodiversity: 40 acres of managed forest; 3 acres of conservation land.
  • Negative feelings about compliance re the environmental commissioner – see report 2006-2007 were 100 of 121 pits in the Oak Ridges Moraine were not in compliance.
  • Worried about amendments that can be made to site plans behind closed doors, without me knowing.
  • How can I have trust in the process? MNR never consulted its own hydrogeologist re this site; or received a written report from MOE, despite their concerns.
  • Environmental Protection ACT: Exhibit 336- the act prevents you from releasing contaminants into the Natural Environment or the Environment.  Concerned about the contaminants from the grout curtain and other sources
  • Concerned about property value loss along with the construction noise of curtain which is not subject to ordinary noise level guidelines.
  • Provincial minimum standards do not protect the people properly.
  • My land provides ecological services to the land – see publication from CVC –$371 million annually in the watershed.
  • Issue number 9- site plans?
    -- There was no indication of my spring (#35) on the site plans. It only appears on the AMP- so how am I protected?

Mr Webb Question:

  • Re the website?
    -- The website is to get information out to the public. Our intent has always been to give out as much information as possible. There was never any intent to mislead. We even have JDCL’s PowerPoint presentation on the website to provide information for the public.

Question: from Mr. Garrod:

  • Where exactly is the spring?
    -- Miss Symmes points out exactly where this is.  Stretches of creek with water in it and stretches of creek without water. Sinkholes are farther east on her brother’s property.

Cross Examination:

  • This is an arial photo of Symmes property? 
    --Looks like it.
  • Shows a number of things- the identification of spring 35 – shows spring 34 – just south of Olde Base Line. 
  • Family holds significant amount of land?
    --Yes
  • Where are the homes on the property? Points out where all the homes are.
    -- This is correct
  • Access for 2 homes is from Olde Base line?
    -- Yes,  it is about 300 metres from the Road- Yes but I can still hear a surprising amount of road noise and hear the Brampton Brick when there is an east wind
  • You have opposed this application for a very long time?
    --I have
  • You wrote a letter of objection to the ministry in March 1998?
    - Yes
  • Had the CCC retained consultants at this point? 
    --I can not remember. Perhaps the hydro-geologist Dr Novakowski by then.
  • You were writing to express your personal concerns?
    --Yes it has been 12 years and it is hard for me to remember.
  • Brampton Brick Site: Your mom wrote a letter and was against that?
    –- I don’t know anything about it.
  • There was a letter from the MOE for a bump up request?
    --Yes- I thought more studies needed to be done locally
  • The role of the CCC in the CCRS - Do you recall the question to Mrs. Richardson about Rod Symmes and his involvement?
    --Yes but I was working fulltime, about 65 hours a week at the time and do not know a lot of what went on in the CCRS.
  • A CCC brochure is produced and Miss Symmes states that this was consistent with what the CCC was trying to do.
  • Another brochure: June 99 second arrow?
    -- Yes, the Public was encouraged to make comments and be part of the process.
  • Oct 99 Position of the CCC on the CCRS?
    -– Yes the CCC made comments as did other groups.
  • Is this the letter from C. Stoneman in Mrs. Richardson’s testimony?
    -– I have only seen one of these letters.
  • Article: “The day of Reckoning” from in the Hills: Who are the people in the photo?
    -- Some people were from NEC, Wellington Councillors, and a lot of agency people who we invited on the water tour.
  • Who wrote the article?
    --Nicola Ross. 
  • Did Nicola Ross not belong to another group?
    --She has belonged to some goups but is working full time now for Alternatives Journal.
  • Your have concerns about water quality and quantity. Did you know there is a requirement to respond with both domestic and agricultural amounts of water?
    --Yes but what is the definition of “reasonable”—the point is this should have been all ironed out ahead of asking for a license.
  • You refer to important environmental features which could be threatened; which experts are you relying on?
    --I am relying on the hydrogeolists- Dr.Novokowski, Dr. Howard and Mr. Blackport and Mr Hims.
  • Did you know that there is going to be a public liaison committee?
    --Yes, I am aware of that; however, where is the enforcement in this committee and not just talk?
  • You said you would lose money. What study were you relying on?
    --The McCormick report, Hite report and Common sense talking to my neighbours who have tried to sell.
  • CRA has been monitoring for more than a decade at this location.
    --Yes I am aware of that.
  • I refer to exhibit is #34 – There was water in that location very seldom in November?
    – That could be, and that is what I said in my testimony, that it is variable from year to year.
  • There is an old dug well in that area?
    --Yes, since the 1800s.
  • That particular well is about 15 meters from Olde Base Line?
    --Yes and I had it filled in to protect the ground water.
  • You state that the Credit River as being the most diverse cold-water fishery river in Ontario?
    --Yes
  • Were you here to hear Cathy Douglas?
    -Yes. 
  • Did you hear her say how MNR met it’s 20% compliance goal in the area?
    -Yes.         

Redirect by Mr. Webb:

  • What do you hear from Brampton Brick?
    -- Back up beeping- Industrial noise and clunking.
  • How often can you hear Brampton Brick?
    --At least once every two weeks. Mainly when there is an east wind.

Niagara Escarpment Commission: Cathy Pounder, Epert Witness as an environmental and urban planner.

  • You have been with the NEC for a number of years?
    --Yes.
  • You have an MA in planning?
    --I have been with the commission since 1978 with a break and returned in 2004. 10 years in total.
  • Have you reviewed the file?
    –- Yes I have
  • She is so qualified!
  • I will start by looking at a map of the Niagara Escarpment. Exhibit 343 comes from the staff report.
  • The Rockfort property is in the NEC planning area just north of the NEC planned area.
    1974, established purpose of the NEC – to provide for the ongoing maintaining as a continual natural environment, to protect unique ecological areas, to provide outdoor activities, and to preserve natural scenery, etc.
  • 1985 plan approved. The Dec. 1997 version of this plan is what we have to deal with for this application.
  • No changes in the objectives since 1997.
  • To maintain the natural stream areas, compatible recreation, permitted uses - system of development control.  Page 12 escarpment protection areas – there are several different areas within the NEC- buffer, agricultural, natural corridor areas, etc.
  • The plan is regulated by a system of development control.
  • The construction of a road would require a development permit. The NEC was declared a World Biosphere by UNESCO in the 90s.
  • All of the proposed haul routes would need a development permit. The NEC is a neighbour to the proposed quarry. The impacts of the quarry on the NEC lands should be looked at by this board.
  • It is not guaranteed that those permits will be issued and permits would be required for monitoring wells in the plan area.
  • Staff report commented on this application:  History of the commission’s involvement in this application.
  • They have been a participant since 2003; provided detailed comments on the CCRS.  In 2000 commented on OPA 161 – I prepared the staff report.
  • General Comments: Insufficient data, insufficient proof of concept, monitoring is problematic, haul route permit problematic.
  • Commission accepted the staff report as written and the vote was unanimous. I separated my report into different topics.

Water Resources:

  • Not satisfied that the model is sufficient. –CBSES- worse case scenario- no mitigation- results- 5 metres or  of drawdown – Relied on Dr. Howard for his assessment of the models.
  • Many features not incorporated into the model. No characterization of the springs at Mississauga Rd and Olde Base Line. Water supplies will be protected according to JDCL i.e.; supply and quality. They are relying on mitigation and AM to ensure quality and quantity. No history to assess the AM
  • See PPS that protects aquifers and water sources.  Also Town of Caledon policy states that there will be no unacceptable impacts. The applicant has not demonstrated this.
    Natural Environment: CRA has said that there is a natural interdependence and therefore it is hard to imagine that there won’t be some negative impacts to the natural features. See PSW, the Terra Cotta woods etc.
  • Also endangered species: Butternut trees, chorus frogs, Jefferson Salamander and Blandings Turtle.
  • They have projected a drawdown of 20CM for the area near the suspected Jefferson Salamander habitat.
  • JDCL will have to have access to monitoring wells within the Development area.
  • Social Community Impacts: 18 residents within 1 km of the quarry - over 50 within the haul route.
  • Also there could be impacts to well water within the community. There is supposed to be a social impact study.  People are absent from the studies.

Cultural Heritage:

  • Not consistent with the Commission’s idea of cultural landscapes. The applicant must demonstrate that there will not be any unacceptable impacts. The hamlet of Rockside continues to be named on the Niagara Escarpment Map. Various features are on the Rockfort property itself.
  • JDCL has had little regard for the PPS in this regard. Also with regard to visual impact, it goes against the PPS and is inconsistent with the Escarpment plan. 
  • The cultural heritage could be compromised because of the new haul route.  All of the proposed routes go thru the Niagara Escarpment.
  • All the roads are presently not up to truck haul route standards. NEC will have to decide if the proposal is essential.

Summary:

  • PPS mineral aggregate section must be read in its entirety. Town of Caledon recognized that a site specific inquiry must be done at Rockfort.
  • Adaptive Management is not a substitute for a justification for the use.
    The license applies only to the licensed lands and has no authority over the monitoring areas or any other areas.
  • Precautionary principle must be applied to this quarry.

Mr. Webb:

  • Did you take into considerations the notes that were supplied by JDCL?
    --Yes I looked at the ones I had at my disposal.
  • Wider rights of ways will result in larger impacts?
    --Theses issues should have been addressed by JDCL.
  • What do you mean by this?
    --It’s not clear what standard the Region is going to apply and therefore we have no idea as to whether JDCL can comply.

CROSS EXAM:

  • Qualifications: You are only a planner not an expert in transportation, or visual impact? 
    --That’s right.
  • You refer to other work you have done on other quarry applications? Was one of those the Nelson Quarry?
    --No 
  • Was one Duntroon?
    -Yes
  • The NEC is opposed to this application?
    -Yes
  • Role of the NEC: The NEC comments on all applications within the Niagara Escarpment Plan and within the planning area? Is there any difference between being adjacent to the NEC or within the planning area?
    --We are looking for impacts.
  • What happens to lands that are right in the plan area? 
    --Have to amend the Escarpment Plan area.
  • In this case, no amendment being required?
    --That’s right
  • The NEC was an appellant to The ROP?
    --I don’t really know.
  • Exhibit 347- Looks at exhibit and yes it is.
  • Concerns with respect to road allowances? 
    --Yes; however, I was not the author of this report and am not familiar with it.
  • Staff is satisfied that the policies do not conflict with policies in particular the mineral aggregate policies? NEC agreed to this?
    --Yes
  • The region established a major road network, which included Olde Base Line and Mississauga Rd?
    -Yes
  • The CCRS: The NEC was an active participant?
    -Yes, but I don’t know how active.
  • Was the NEC an appellant to 161?
    -Yes.
  • It participated in the settlement discussions and finally agreed?
    --Yes; however, not having been there I can not say what the policy was.
  • You were not here for any of the other witnesses?
    --I was here for the first day only.
  • There is a long debate in the NEC over land use policies?
    --Yes. Mineral aggregate has been long debated.
  • We know that the provincial cabinet has approved the plan?
    --Yes
  • There has been controversy over what the Commission has put forth….. policies that have not been approved?
    --Yes
  • Wanted to remove aggregates from the Plan Area in 1993?
    --Yes
  • The first page, the executive summary: Provides for a 5 yr review. Ensures good planning. Basic principles of the Plan are sound. The 2 core designations act to preserve a green band that goes from Kingston to Tobermory. Provides for mineral aggregate areas, which can be accommodated by an amendment to the NEC Plan.
    It was found that there was an issue with bias on the part of the NEC with regard to policy?
    --There seems to be recognition that the Commissioner and staff had a different point of view from the hearing officers.
  • Based on its 10 year experience, the commission has decided that the Mineral Aggregate extraction is not conducive to the Plan?
    --Yes
  • The Commission was more or less saying you can get the stuff elsewhere?
    --I don’t know whether it says that in this paragraph.
  • The Bird and Hale Report: identified resources outside the Plan area?
    -- Yes
  • Their identification included the Rockfort area?
    --I am not aware of this.
  • Findings: The approach to mineral aggregate extraction was flawed. There have been a number of approvals since then? At least 10? 
    --Yes.  We have not been able to determine that there have been adverse effects from the mineral resource activities that have been ongoing.
  • Main recommendation: that the existing provisions for Mineral aggregate extraction be retained. Am I right in saying they remain essentially the same today? After the Bird and Hale report they recommended that mineral aggregate be retained if they can be accommodated.
    --Yes, but …Every site has to be looked at individually.
  • The Biosphere Reserve: given in 1990-they need to strike a balance with other needs?
    --Yes.
  • There is a strong notion to the idea that haul distance is a very environmental notion?  --That is all else being equal.
  • Mr. Kellogg represented the APAO- The reserve designation is a good example of the way in which development can be balanced with the natural Environment. The Biosphere designation does not preclude development?
    --Yes
  • Mr. Lui mirrored the policies of the commission?
    --Yes
  • When this designation was put into place (UNESCO) it was in agreement with the policies of the time?
    --Yes
  • Do you know whether other reserves have mining in their policies?
    --No
  • The Proposed plan for the Niagara Escarpment: Section 1.8 The Commission began its task with a diverse area……..Many people asked how such a large planning area came about…..The commission questioned the size ……The result was that the Commission recommended that Plan be composed of the most environmentally sensitive area. The area is 748 sq miles. When the Plan is established the area of control should reflect the size of the Plan?
    --The Planning area remains notwithstanding this recommendation.
  • Do you agree that the current plan includes that the Plan area and the planning area?
    -Yes
    Do you agree that the Plan includes all land within the Planning area?
    --I think that is the case.
  • Witness statement: Water resources- You speak about the grout curtain – did you refer to Mr. Naudts peer review? You did not consult with Dr. Bruce?
    --No
  • You refer to Dr. Howard on the issue of equivalent porous medium. Have you looked at the most recent version of the AMP?
    --Yes
  • Does the AMP not require monitoring, and these are things that DFO and MNR have signed off on? Did you look at any other information other than Dr. Howard? 
    --Yes
  • At this time the NEC had rec’d a Peer Review in connection with the Dumphries Quarry- hydrogeology- Their specialist in Hydro-modeling.
    This particular article is sent March 8/09- “We have rec’d draft questions from you (NEC)” – argument ensues re bringing in testimony from an entirely different hydro geologist.
  • Conclusion: The Chair agrees only that Miss Pounder had many experts to rely on other than Dr. Howard.
  • Statement from Witness statement: That the water on the property to the east will be affected – Where does it say that this is unacceptable?
    --There is a section where it says that……
  • You did not hear the testimony of Mr. Goodbans? You did not consult with the MNR, or any other consultants?
    --No I did not.
  • JDCL has offered to post security?
    --I am aware of that now. However, there are no agreements as such.  There are no figures that explain what happens without mitigation. I would have expected that.
  • The witness statement: A development within the Plan has to meet federal, provincial and Municipal requirements?
    --Yes
  • With regard to Cultural Heritage… Did you rely on anyone but Mr. Shineman?  Were you aware that the Minister signed off on this?
    --No- I relied on the witness statement of Mr. Shineman.
  • Visual Policy: NEC guidelines- Studies are not intended to address the issues of private property- Is this the approach that Miss Naylor took?
    --Yes. It is one of the approaches she took.
  • You relied on her statement?
    --Yes
  • Exhibit 352- NEC report- Belfountain ESR… In order that the ERS does not compromise the JDCL application- it should be put off until the JDCL application is decided. This is exactly opposite to what you have said today!
    --Yes, I think an environmental assessment should have been done at this time.
  • You are suggesting that JDCL do something that they can’t do!!!!
    --The NEC can not speak to the haul route unless an EA is done by the Region.
  • On the subject of Monitoring Wells:  Your client will need to have a development permit, and they in turn will have to come from the property owners.
  • The precautionary principle: May I suggest that there are many precautionary principles within this application?
    --My idea is that there is a general precautionary principle needed within the application itself.
  • Is there any discussion in your report re the positives in this report?
    --My job was to look at the impacts that this application would have on the NEC
  • You have provided an overall opinion without a balanced approach?
    --I did weigh the negative and positive aspects in the objectives of the land. I do believe I presented a balance approach to my client as it applies to the NEC Plan. What I was looking at was impacts to the NEC.