Midhurst sprawl: What is the weakest response a developer could make when Ontario Nature calls about their plan?

June 19, 2014

Why did Geranium Corp. appear to effectively say “no comment” if this scheme is such a done deal?

20140601 Midhurst residents 3

Threatened: Proposed development could adversely affect Minesing Wetlands.

 An interesting article in the summer edition of Ontario Nature‘s newsletter, ON Nature, called: Midhurst residents oppose development: pdf

 …In 2012, the Ontario minister of infrastructure granted MLG a “special rule” allowing the developer group to proceed with planning the first 300 hectares of the project.

Geranium Corp., the largest member in the MLG consortium, is no stranger to controversial projects. The developer is also behind the Big Bay Point Marina development on Lake Simcoe, which received approval despite concerns over the environmental impact of adding 1,600 timeshare units and a 1,000-slip marina to the already taxed watershed. “They’re extremely good at marketing their proposals to government and, more often than not, they’re successful,” says Strachan. “It’s amazing to me how gullible the government has been.” (At press time, calls to Geranium Corp. for comment had not been returned.)

While 4/7ths of the current Springwater Township continues to strike a truly ostrich assume-the-position, position, the winds of change are bringing in some very heavy-weight opponents of the Midhurst Secondary Plan.

While Springwater Township has warned that any attempt to stop the development in Midhurst would result in lawsuits, Strachan and others are not willing to give up the fight. A number of high-profile artists and politicians, including Margaret Atwood, Maude Barlow, MPP Jim Wilson and MP Patrick Brown, publicly support the campaign. More information is available on Stop Springwater Sprawl (stopspringwatersprawl.com).

Don’t forget to come to the MRA’s event this Sunday: Celebration of Rural Living with Margaret Atwood.

Margaret Atwood poster

Cross-posted on iLoveMidhurst.ca and voteLesStewart.ca.


Margaret Atwood coming to Midhurst on Sunday June 22nd

May 24, 2014

A special visit announcement by AWARE Simcoe to draw attention to the negative affects of unchecked urban sprawl.

Dirt margaret


from the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association

Author Margaret Atwood is fulfilling her promise to come to Midhurst if the number of people signing the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Petition reaches 5,000. That happened in March and now arrangements have been finalized: Atwood will speak in Midhurst on Sunday, June 22 12-3 pm at a Celebration of Rural Living.

Tickets are on sale now for this special event coordinated by the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association that will highlight the importance of rural communities and the resources they protect (foodlands, fresh water and natural heritage).

Tickets are limited, so purchase yours now. ONLY $20! Buy tickets online

Volunteer Drive Meeting:

Sunday, May 25 – 7 pm Midhurst Community Hall (74 Doran Rd.)

The MRA needs you. On June 22nd, they require at least 30 volunteers for a variety of tasks including, but not limited to: parking attendants, BBQ attendants, greeters, cashiers. They also need volunteers to distribute posters ahead of the event. A volunteer drive is being held Sunday night – sign up, get more information about the event and engage with the MRA executive about current and future initiatives.

If you can’t attend, but would still like to volunteer, email your name and contact info and someone from their Events team will get in touch with you. Email Events Team


Speakers – Begins at 12:30

Emcee – AM 740’s Dale Goldhawk

Supporting Speakers:

  • Shirley Boxem, Food and Water First – “The Importance of Farmland Preservation”
  • David Donnelly, Donnelly Law – “Learning from Mistakes and Building a Better Future for Ontario”
  • Sandy Buxton, Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association – “The Midhurst Story”

Keynote Address: Margaret Atwood – “Why Community Matters and Her Journey into Getting Involved”

Sprawl will devastate the wetlands, water, parkland, and forests of south Springwater Township.

April 8, 2014

We are not obligated to listen to the false siren song of  cancer-like exploitation. Smarten up.

MRAIt ain’t a done deal.

Sun. April 27 – Volunteer/Info Night
7 pm Midhurst Community Centre
74 Doran Rd., Midhurst
Light refreshments will be provided

Standing up to formidable, well-resourced opponents takes time, a lot of energy and money. Our strong, hard-working and dynamic team needs YOU to help propel our campaign to the next level, regardless of how much or how little time you have to spare! People are paying attention to us. Our message is reaching influential ears. Even if you can’t commit to a set task, but want to learn more about what is happening or have some great ideas to share, please come out on the 27th to meet our team, fellow neighbours and get involved. We can’t do this without the support of our community.

If you care about what is happening here, find ways that will enable you to say “I made made a difference”.

Join us.

Daddy what

The Margaret Atwood anti-sprawl Midhurst petition challenge is shattered!!

March 30, 2014

It will be a pleasure to welcome Ms. Atwood and perhaps some of her friends to our nearly 200 year old community.

MCC SPCC sign 1

Midhurst Community Hall, Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association Annual General Meeting, January 26, 2014.

The cancer-like urban sprawl plan threatens farmland, the Minesing Wetlands,  Springwater Park, forced hook-ups for sewer and water for all Midhurst and out-of-sight tax bills for all Springwater Township residents for decades into the future.

As reported by AWARE Simcoe on March 26th, Yes! Midhurst petiton tops 5.000:

Final push joined by Atwood in Twitter feed
Today, the 5,000th person signed the petition to save the village of Midhurst (population 3,500), preserve the 756 hectares of surrounding farmland and stop the proposed effluent discharge into the Willow Creek and the internationally treasured Minesing Wetlands.

And the count of those opposed to the Midhurst Secondary Plan, which would expand the Midhurst population to 28,000, continues to rise.

The final Twitter push from Save Midhurst Now proclaiming that only 13 signatures were needed was re-tweeted in the early hours today by author Margaret Atwood, who has pledged to visit Midhurst and do a workshop at a nearby high school if 5,000 people sign the petition.

The Midhurst residents’ group has unveiled a new video and song in support of the cause. Click here to view it.

Sign the petition

Congratulations to everyone, especially Margaret Prophet and all her crack public relations associates at the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association.

Posted on FranchiseFool.com and iLoveMidhurst.ca.

Global TV News and Margaret Atwood take on Springwater Township sprawl plan.

March 20, 2014

If you haven’t, please sign the petition to bring Margaret Atwood on side: sign here.

Global Margaret Atwood3

Thu, Mar 20: Plans are in the works to turn the Ontario farming community of Midhurst into a bustling suburban city. But some in the community are calling the transformation a step backwards. Christina Stevens explains.

Click here to view the very well done newscast.

People and Organizations: Margaret Atwood, Margaret Prophet, Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association, Mayor Linda Collins, Township of Springwater, Christina Stevens, Global News, Chris Evans, Minesing Wetlands, Anne Ritchie-Nahuis, Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture

Posted on voteLesStewart.ca and iLoveMidhurst.ca.

Who is Alex Nuttall’s right hand man in Midhurst?

December 9, 2013

From this picture at least, it is David Strachan, president of the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association.

Strachan Nuttall

David Strachan, Alex Nuttall, Sandy Buxton and Aidan Grove-White (left to right)

Other individuals quoted in AWARE Simcoe’s coverage, Growth will Really Pay for Growth: Nuttall,  were:

  • Mr. Jack Hanna, current Ward 5 councillor (Midhurst), Township of Springwater,
  • Mr. Aidan Grove-White, Environmental Defence Canada,
  • Ms. Sandy Buxton, Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association, and
  • Mr. Patrick Brown MP Barrie.

Organizations who attended: North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance, Angus Ratepayers’ Association and Nottawasaga Steelheaders.

Cross-posted on iLoveMidhurst.ca.

Are the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association and Environmental Defence either incompetent or co-opted financially as activists?

December 7, 2013

Was today’s event a bought-and-paid-for publicity stunt to increase the next Conservative candidate’s profile in new Barrie-Oro-Springwater (Midhurst) riding with the first federal election being in Oct 2015?

MRA Nuttall Strachan1

Did money donated to the Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association, MRA and Environmental Defence Canada, EDC go toward the cost of this event or was the money from another source? Are either or both of them shills for a political party that represents pro-development or can any interest group buy their brand?

I recall the MRA accusing the Township of Springwater for calling  short notice and scheduling information sessions at unbelievably difficult times for citizens to attend. They then said their were “extensive good faith consultations”. I wonder who paid for the show today because my impression from the MRA was that was never enough money to do even a half-assed defence of Midhurst.

1. Extremely Short Notice: I received the bulk email from the MRA last night 11:18 pm (Dec 6th). That would have given me 13 hours to re-arrange my Saturday afternoon. Oddly, the  EDC media advisory also had a very short media fuse as well: out  Dec 6th.

And, to boot, the ED communique mentioned a federal MP (Mr. Patrick Brown Barrie) would be attending although(1) Midhurst is in the Simcoe-Grey riding (Hon. Dr. Kellie Leitch MP) and (2) growth and sprawl are a provincial not a federal jurisdiction. Shouldn’t Jim Wilson MPP Simcoe-Grey who is the 2nd most powerful Conservative in the Hudak caucus (or even Rod Jackson), be explaining growth issues to his own constituents?

I would have gone to it because I would have loved to ask some questions of David Strachan, president of the Midhurst Ratepayers’, Alex Nuttall, City of Barrie Ward 10 councillor (farthest south and east ward in Barrie, rumoured MP hopeful) and EDC. I believe I am a member in good standing and have contributed financially to both the MRA and EDC.

2. Missing Article: In fact, I wrote the only article about the Midhurst Secondary Plan for EDC at the request of their Claire Malcolmson. It was called Midhurst Secondary Plan: Village to grow 10 times? and was published on their weblog on February 13, 2012. When I tried clicking through on the URL that I had listed as a pdf this is the image that came up:

ED Search1

So as an author I no longer have access to the article? I also tried searching ED’s blog with the title and my name, but no luck.

Click here for a pdf copy of the article or here for a post that I wrote called: Land speculation and other confidence games have always relied on human weakness., iLoveMidhurst.ca, February 14, 2012.

David Donnelly

3. ED’s legal counsel is listed as David Donnelly.

He was Executive Director of Environmental Defence Canada from 1988 to 1996 in addition to having been  very involved in the Big Bay Point SLAPP situation as well as many ongoing First Nations issues.

The only federal issue that I am aware of that links Mrs. Brown, Strachan and Donnelly are the ladies at Springwater Park – Camp Nibi

Cross-posted on iLoveMidhurst.ca.

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