Silverdale Public Hearings Resume Tuesday Dec. 9/08


The Silverdale Public hearings resume Tuesday Dec. 9, 6:30 at the Best Western.  No doubt, council is expecting a poor turnout due to the time of year and disappointing election results.  Despite the election, nothing has changed.  The plan fails to satisfy both provincial and federal ministry scientists (see dfo_oct_17_08 & moe_oct_21_08) and the financing is uncertain given Genstar’s statement that the current PDA is not viable for them (see genstar_sept29_08 ). 
The problem with this process is that the public interest has been completely left out of planning.  The Neighbourhood Planning Advisory Committee (NPAC), which should have been representing the public, included the proponents and a number of people with a vested interest in the development.  CAUSS attended a meeting where NPAC openly admitted that they did not represent the public and public comments, submitted during the various open houses, were barely considered.
Because the public have been left out, the Public Hearing has become a critical forum for expressing and documenting public concerns. So far, the hearings have revealed the negligence of Mission in not having its own project manager, not conducting any risk assessment whatsoever, not addressing resident concerns about ground water contamination,  not including seniors housing or affordable housing options, worsening the resident:employment ratio in our community (so even more people have to commute out of mission to work than before), risking our air quality, etc. etc. etc.
Genstar recently told Mission that they have no intention of starting for at least 2 years due to current market conditions (pg 12. Nov.24/08 DOM Council agenda).  Why then is there such a rush to approve this plan and lock us in for 20 years, before the public and ministry concerns are addressed?
People need to attend the Public Hearing and continue to present the public concerns as well as support citizens in making their presentations.