I voted for Tom Rowett for one reason. It was not because he promised to cut taxes, reduce spending or save public funds. He articulated his resolve to tackle the region’s greatest threat: clandestine fill operations such as Greenbank (a.k.a Green Back) Airport and projects by Earth Worx.
In a pre-election pole Chuck Mercier failed to fill out a questionnaire outlining the problems of fill-operations such as truck traffic, noise, and ground water contamination. Conversely, Tom Rowett, not only demonstrated an understanding of the problem but a sincere resolve to correct it.
Maybe I have it wrong. Perhaps former Mayor Mercier felt he had exhausted all avenues to control the brazen dumping of questionable soil from the GTA into the Oak Ridges Moraine. Perhaps he felt it wasn’t under the township’s jurisdiction and wanted to avoid adopting the responsibility.
The bottom line is the dirty-fill issue was not handled judiciously and as Mayor he failed to protect rural citizens from a rouge and unlawful business operation. Rural Canada has always been the dumping grounds for cities. We raze our forests, mine our bedrock and strip agricultural soil to accommodate subdivisions. In return we accept unwanted contaminated dirt , domestic and industrial garbage, and thousands of cottagers every week-end. Sure we can rationalize that the economic spin-offs from these activities justify the inconveniences. But the inconveniences have evolved into an intolerable nightmare for many - forcing some residents to sell their homes and relocate.
If Scugog has become the trash-heap for the GTA - all under the guise of job creation, then I intend to join the exodus to greener pastures. Hopefully Mr. Rowett will realize this crisis has become an emergency and act accordingly by shutting down these back-water fill operations and clear the streets of the omnipresent truck traffic.