Revelation of CAW ‘FIT’ contract rubs salt into local residents’ wounds

Shoreline Beacon
The Town of Saugeen Shores, its residents and council, are up in arms as construction of the C AW’s wind turbine began this week. The location of the turbine–in a residential neighbourhood at the CAW’s Family Education Centre– flaunts provincial laws and municipal legislation because the property is too small. The turbine will be closer to homes than allowed under current provincial law designed to protect health. The Ministry of the Environment is allowing the project to proceed because approval was obtained before the laws changed. “It s insane,” said Greg Schmalz, who lives across the road from the Centre. “Pure and simple, it’s just wrong.”

Anger turned to outrage this week as people learned that the turbine doesn’t even need to be located there. For the past six years, residents were informed (by a C AW pamphlet distributed to the community) that the turbine would “supply the Family Education Centre with its electrical power needs“.  However, residents have discovered that after all public hearings the CAW recently signed a government “Feed-in Tariff Contract” to sell the power to the grid. The turbine, a commercial for-profit venture, now breaks municipal zoning bylaws.

“It s just a feeder,” said Paul Krane, an angered resident. “It doesn’t even need to be located there,” he says pointing to the CAW’s soccer field. “Taxpayers are subsidizing the building of this turbine and the CAW will profit from selling the electricity.  Meanwhile , Saugeen Shores residents are paying with their health.”

Town council agreed the project goes against its municipal wind turbine bylaw and policy, it’s zoning bylaws and provincial 550 meter health and safety setbacks. Saugeen Shores council wants the project stopped but, so far, has been powerless to do anything about it as changes to the law by the Liberal Government took away any Town’s power to enforce zoning on wind turbines

“We have no objections to the idea of wind power,” said Saugeen Shore’s mayor Mike Smith. “There are a lot of places it could go… we don’t think (the turbine) should be there with houses which are going to be 150 meters away.”

S.T.O.P. (Saugeen Turbine Operation Policy), a local advocacy group, has banded residents together to convince government to revoke the project’s permit and is supported by Windconcerns Ontario who represent 58 groups like S.T.O.P. all over Ontario.

Email your protest to: doris.dumais@ontario.ca she can stop it. For more information, email stop. the. turbine@gmail.com.

19 thoughts on “Revelation of CAW ‘FIT’ contract rubs salt into local residents’ wounds

  1. If you see your comment deleted, please keep in mind that general union bashing will not be tolerated here. Keep to the issue at hand.

  2. Anybody who thought the electricity would “supply the Family Education Centre with its electrical power needs“ has been living in willful ignorance, IMO. Even a little research would have exposed that lie.

    Switching topics, I’m still trying to understand the process whereby this project got approved. It is allowed to go ahead because it was approved under the pre-GEA rules, when municipalities had more say. Now we find out that it is also against the municipality’s zoning rules, which presumably would have been in effect when the approval was granted. So who had the final say when it was approved? Pre-GEA, wouldn’t it have been the locals?

    • Same thing happened here. The project was approved one day before the GEA came into effect so they didn’t have to abide by the GEA.

      But…catch 22. Once the GEA overruled everything, the municipality no longer had the power to enforce it’s own past rules. So basically, the project didn’t have to abide by ANY rules. Our project also went against municipal bylaws but the MOE said “Gee, too bad”.

      As you know, they were making things up as they went along. It is wrong no matter how you look at it.

    • There ought to be ‘a bill’ called –
      ‘Who’s kidding who’?

    • I can’t remember where I read it, but I thought that after the local municipality said no, the CAW went to the OMB which overruled the local government.

  3. Rural Grubby is right.
    Until more tax payer’s understand that wind powered electricity is a lose-lose financial situation, you will not get the support needed to end this nonsense.
    In this province , to many people do not seem to understand how indebted we are.
    Per capita we are in line with Greece’s debt.
    Not enough people care about someone else”s health issues.
    ME FIRST seems to apply most of the time.

  4. You hit the nail right on the head, Tony.. 100% correct…..

  5. This Union needs a little bashing as they are bashing the locals that live there. they should not get a red carpet treatment. They are not nice period to allow this to happen.

    • Hey Ed,
      Great Link!
      So when you look at your link 2006/2007 it appears all is settled @ the OMB.

      But – when you look @ the OMB website case # PLO60313 –
      a continuation of the hearing was to commence on Oct. 9 – 2009 –
      but was cancelled – and the status remains open.

      Very odd!

      Saugeen Shores
      OMB Contact: Raymond Borja, Planner, (416) 326-5358
      http://www.omb.gov.on.ca/english/eStatus/eStatus.html

    • Ed:

      Hey! That’s great. Apparently they are open to not building the unit — according to your link. See????

      CAW commits to foster an open, transparent and honest communication with municipal officials, local residents and employees of the FEC regarding the operation of the turbine.

      Who could ask for more? Open, Transparent, Honest… Gee. Whoodda thunk it?

  6. And here you have it: The locals concur that they want the turbine:

    [November 2011] The Town of Saugeen Shores Chief Building Official issues a building permit that allows construction of the wind turbine to begin. Case closed.

    If they (The Town council and officials) did not want the turbine erected they could have refused the permit. Right?

    …and let’s face it. With all this openness, honesty and transparency floating about it’s clear that they (The CAW) will remove the turbine and turn the scrap into birdhouses if it bothers anybody, or flings ice on their cars, or proves unsightly…. We know from the Actions of Dalton — hisself — that that it’s completely acceptable to refuse an IWT installation if you don;t like the appearance of the flailing behemoths…

    In any case a resolution would be to pop the thing onto the front yard of the Premiers Ottawa office and test his enthusiasm “under fire” so to speak… If city folk do indeed love turbines he will have a constant parade of appreciation for his efforts towards enlightenment of the unwashed masses.

    All The McGuinty. Emperor forever!

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