“Most people would agree with Joni Mitchell, who implored us not to “pave paradise and put up a parking lot.” – St. Catharines Liberal MPP Jim Bradley
News from the Constituency Office of St. Catharines MPP Jim Bradley
Posted May 3rd, 2018 on Niagara At Large
A Brief Foreword from Doug Draper at Niagara At Large – For those who may have missed it, a video surfaced a few days ago, showing then Ontario PC leadership candidate Doug Ford, in February 2018, telling a gathering of developers and others that if he becomes the province’s next premier, he would allow the sale of “big chunks” of protected lands in the Greenbelt to make way for “more affordable housing.”
The video triggered enough public outrage that within a period of 48 hours following its release, Ford then said he would replace “chunks” of the Greenbelt paved over with Greenbelt lands somewhere else, before he finally attempted to back completely away from all of that with a pledge that he would not touch the Greenbelt at all.
St. Catharines Liberal MPP Jim Bradley, along with two NDP representatives from the Niagara area, the late Mel Swart and Peter Kormos, played an instrumental role in getting the province to agree in 2005 to create a Greenbelt in and around Niagara, Hamilton and the Greater Toronto Area to protect hundreds of thousands of acres of lands from urban development in the first place.
Here, for the record, are some comments Bradley made in the Ontario legislature this May 1st –
Official Records for 1 May 2018, Hansard Transcripts
LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF ONTARIO
Mr. James J. Bradley: One of the main reasons I decided to run for public office at the provincial level was to protect our valuable farmland, green fields, wetlands, ravines, rivers, streams and environmentally sensitive areas from unwise and reckless development.
When our government was elected to office in 2003, urban communities were sprawling at a dangerous rate and tens of thousands of acres of precious land were being gobbled up for development. To counter this worrisome trend, our government created the largest permanent greenbelt anywhere in the world, which protects almost two million acres of pristine land and fresh water.
Unfortunately, in the Niagara region, because of land use decisions made in the 1970s, prime agricultural land with special soils and the unique microclimate conducive to the growing of tender fruit were paved over and lost to the greater good forever.
People of all political persuasions have lauded this initiative and expressed support for the greenbelt. They would be appalled and extremely concerned when viewing a video of PC Party leader Doug Ford promising developers to open up a “big chunk” of Ontario’s greenbelt for development, admitting that he had already talked to some of the biggest developers in the country.
Most people would agree with Joni Mitchell, who implored us not to “pave paradise and put up a parking lot.”
To read a recent commentary Niagara At Large posted on this issue, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2018/05/02/doug-fords-plan-to-open-a-big-chunk-of-our-greenbelt-to-urban-development-should-doom-his-pc-partys-ontario-election-chances-2/ .
Here is another recent post on the same issue – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2018/05/02/now-doug-ford-says-he-wont-touch-the-greenbelt/ .
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“A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders