STAY TUNE FOR MORE ON THIS ISSUE AROUND AN AGENCY THAT IS SUPPOSED TO PRESERVE AND PROTECT SOME OF THIS REGION’S MOST PRECIOUS GREEN LANDS
From the office of Cindy Forster, an NDP representative for the Welland Riding of Niagara, Ontario riding of Welland
Today, Cindy Forster made a statement in the house about concerns surrounding the recent action of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority:
I stand in the Legislature today to echo the concerns of city councilors, regional councilors, conservationists, residents of the Niagara Region as well as past and present members of the board of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority over the recent actions of the NPCA.
Since January of 2012 the NPCA has fired 20% of their staff, including many long-serving senior positions.
These personnel changes have not been the only major changes taking place. The NPCA recently released their Strategic Plan that outlines their goals for the next four years. Concerns have been raised over the language in the Plan and the shift towards the potential sale of NPCA land.
In the plan, one of the key objectives is the ‘Streamlined, Efficient Delivery of Development Approvals Process’, which clearly defines development as a priority. Further, I have been informed that a separate committee has been struck to deal specifically with property acquisition and disposal. The committee is being comprised of many from the development community.
According to the mandate of Conservation Authorities of Ontario, the NPCA is here to ensure that Ontario’s rivers, lakes and streams are properly safeguarded, managed and restored; to protect, manage and restore Ontario’s woodlands, wetlands and natural habitat; to develop and maintain programs that will protect life and property from natural hazards such as flooding and erosion; to provide opportunities for the public to enjoy, learn from and respect Ontario’s natural environment.
Many are worried that the NPCA is diverting away from their mandate and I stand here today to bring awareness to this issue to ensure the Minister of Natural Resources exercises his ministerial authority to ensure that the NPCA is operating as per their mandate and in accordance with Ministry and OCA regulations.
There will be more information to come tomorrow.
(If you care about protecting and preserving green space in Niagara, Nagara At Large encourages you to share your views on this post. A reminder that we only post comments by individuals who share their first and last name with them.)