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Save the Bidwell Forest Web-page
E-Mails & Letters in support
#.1- Glenn Gumulka    #.2 - Glenn Gumulka    #.3 - ?   #.4 - ?
#.5 - Donald Barber   #.6 - ?   #.7- Donald Barber    #.8

#.1                Dear Madame Mayor,        June 24, 2004

It is with great disappointment that I write to you today after receiving the attached email below.  Once again it seems that the Mayor of Mississauga and city council have completely failed the citizens of the city.

This email reinforces my strongly held belief that the city is essentially run by developers.
Unfortunately for those who inhabit this city, developers voraciously consume and destroy the natural environment, leaving a depleted, polluted, and sterile environment for future generations.

Isn't it about time that city council found the courage and the vision to save some of the few remaining pockets of natural environment in Mississauga?  Or will you continue to run this city forever with long outdated planning policies lacking in sensitivity and care for our environment?

Remember - whatever we do to the environment we ultimately do to ourselves.

Regretfully yours,

Glenn Gumulka (Bcom, MBA, MES)
Ideas for a sustainable city

#.2            Dear Mr. Mandelbaum & Mr. Hofstedter,        June 24, 2004

It is with a great sense of disappointment that I write to you today and ask that you honour your commitment to spare the small tree lot located on the property at Britania Road and Bidwell trail in Mississauga.

As you know this woodlot contains rare Carolinian tree species such as the Shagbark hickory.  These trees are an important part of our heritage, and environment.  They should be protected for posterity, not destroyed for profit.  Please step forward and accept the responsibility for the commitment you made to the citizens of Mississauga by protecting what is left of this rare gem.

Disrupting this preservation area will destroy dozens of trees and is a clear violation of the spirit of the agreement to protect this area.  Please prove to the citizens of Mississauga that at least one developer cares about our environment.  Please do the right thing, and protect the tree lot.

I will be posting a story about this tree lot on my website, complete with pictures.  I hope the story will have a happy ending.  Only you can make that happen.

Hopefully yours,

Glenn Gumulka
Ideas for a sustainable city

#.3                Good day:               June 24, 2004

The Brampton Social Action Network forwarded a copy of their press release concerning the Tree Preservation Area (Bidwell Trail west of Mavis) , and the sewer trenching related to the development plans of H + R Developments.

There is, as you are no doubt aware, a difference between what is legal and what is right.

While it may well be that the developer has the legal right to run a sewer trench through the Tree Preservation Area, it is impossible to believe that there aren't reasonable alternatives to this routing that will not damage what many perceive as a vital area to protect,

Mississauga and Brampton have both grown at an unbelievable pace over the last 15 or 20 years, and they now both look to be monuments to nothing more than greed, and lack of foresight.

Preserving a small area which has such significance and will cost the cities very little, seems a small price to pay for what has taken place in the past.

I am writing today to urge you to find the alternatives, and while I may only be one voice, I can assure you that the sentiment is widely echoed.

Thank you for your attention. 

#.4                Ms.Hazel Mccallion,               June 24, 2004

If you do not hear us where is Democracy?
TODAY, HR company and his owner Mark Mandelbaum is cutting our trees.

Your approach reminds me this part from Bernard Lewis'(Professor at Princeton University) one of his books:

"...The difference between Middle Eastern and Western economic approaches can be seen in their distinctive forms of corruption, from which neither society is exempt.  In the West, one makes money in the market, and uses it to buy or influence power. In the East, one seizes power, and uses it to make money.  Morally, there is no difference the two,..."

Last week, I called the city forestry department to learn about ' tree preservation policies/procedures in Mississauga'.  I am told that The city of Mississauga do not have updated tree preservation policies.  I am told that the one you are using 20 - 30 years old.  I can voluntarily update all your procedures and you do not need to waste our taxes.

City of Mississauga
ATTN: Hazel McCallion, Mayor

RE: Your File C.01 / Proposed Sewer Through Tree Preservation Area.

Dear Madam Mayor;                                    July 5, 2004

     And to think, I thought I had heard it all about how the City of Mississauga was run but this strikes a new low.  A legal loop hole big enough to drive a sewer main though a Tree Preservation Area (TPA), and another example of the mess created when a city gets rid of its environmental committee.  A servicing easement is being planned at the Britannia/Bidwell Trail development site that will go directly through the TPA established by a settlement agreement with the landowner Fitzwood and ratified by the Ontario
Municipal Board (OMB).  This should not be allowed as it is as it violates, if not the letter of the settlement agreement that established the TPA, then its spirit and intent, making it an affront to justice and Canadian law.  Also, I would say that the City of Mississauga is an involved party to these dealing and therefore there is an onus on the City of Mississauga or more precisely the Mayor, to ensure the highest moral standards are adhered to.

     The sewer main should not go any where near the TPA and the sewer main selection route process should be restarted with Therese Taylor fully involved as the settlement agreement calls for.  That any trees cut so far in the TPA for the sewer main should be replanted with the Shagbark Hickorys’.  To make up for the stress caused to Therese Taylor and her community supporters, the City should make a special effort to ensure the TPA receives the best protection the City can give.

     Secondly, the Mayor needs to make it clear to the developer that they should not attempt legal action against either Susan Karrandjas or Therese Taylor for making this matter public.  Mrs. Taylor is the mother of 3 young children trying to do the right thing for the community and she should not be made an example of by being made to pay thousands of dollars in court costs.  In a Democracy persons like Therese are rare and very necessary for a health Democracy.  If the Mayor advises the developer not to attempt legal action then it will likely come to pass. It is the just thing to do.

    The case for the City of Mississauga being a third party to this matter, if not legally, then morally is a strong one.  Two sections of note in settlement agreement are;

2.    The TPA will be maintained in accordance with the City of Mississauga’s [“City”]
        current policies and practices applicable to such areas;

3.    The development of the balance of Fitzwood’s lands will be subject to the City’s
       current policies and practices respecting the site plan approval process;

     Then there is the fact that the City is the approving body for where this sewer goes and the wording of the settlement agreement it gives the City significant control over what will happen in the TPA.  At the very least, the City could have told Therese of what was going on as the City knew she was an interested, involved party and this is a Planning matter.

 - 1 -                                                  - 2 -

     Mrs. Taylor writes “Linda Warth has confirmed in writing that Fitzwood is proceeding with their "site plan based upon our settlement agreement."  Ms. Warth also told me in a telephone conversation that an in camera meeting of Mississauga City Council was held in September and that City Council accepts the settlement agreement.”  Clearly City politicians and staff were aware of the terms of the settlement agreement, as they considered the signed copy in a secret Council meeting.  They judged the terms agreeable,
so why would the City not up hold them?  After all, they were involved in this OMB process.  The section of the settlement agreement of greatest importance is:

4.     Fitzwood will provide Susan Karrandjas and Therese Taylor [“Appellants”] with a
        copy of any material it hereinafter submits to the City as part of the site plan process
        as it relates to the TPA;

     Was that part of the settlement agreement kept?  This is what Mrs. Taylor has to say;
“The settlement agreement that we signed with the landowner included a site plan which depicted the location and the dimensions of the Tree Preservation Area.  In fact when the site plan was initialed, Susan persuaded the landowner to “minimize encroachment as much as feasible.”  There was no indication of a servicing easement or a hole in the Tree Preservation Area.  Never in a million years would we have thought that a City law would allow them to do this,”.

     Do not forget that this settlement agreement (which I read “the proposal” to be), and its effects were noted 3 times in the OMB Decision/Order, that ended this Appeal regarding the Bidwell woods.  The City should consider up holding both the letter and the spirit of the OMB decision and the settlement agreement that the OMB Decision/Order is based on.

2.     The proposal achieves a balance between the development of 78 row dwellings and
       a larger tree preservation area.

3.     The proposed tree preservation area provides an appropriate buffer between the
        proposed row dwellings and the existing commercial plaza.

4.     The proposal represents good planning.

     To a reasonable person the facts of this matter are; the City knew of the terms of the agreement; knew they were a part of an OMB Decision/Order; that the City was an involved party to the devolvement of the area in question and in the protection of the TPA; the City knew that Susan Karrandjas and Therese Taylor were members of the community who had a keen interest in the TPA; that generally under the Planning Act people who have expressed an interest in a certain developments should be kept informed, so they can make meaningful input; that #.4 of the settlement agreement clearly spells out they are to be kept informed, THEREFORE; involved in activities regarding the TPA.

     If there is not a legal onus on the City to make sure the “Appellants” got the copies of the material that the settlement agreed to in a timely fashion so the “Appellants” could be a part of any process, in a meaningful way, that involves the TPA, then there would be a moral one.  After all, why provide the material if not to involve a person?

- 3 -

     It would be morally, if not legally wrong for the City to allow one party of an agreement to ignore its contractual obligations in a process that the City is party to.  To allow any party to gain, in any way from not displaying the actions that reasonable person would conclude as adhering to the settlement terms is unjust and it should not allowed.  The City would be sanctioning such conduct that violates the intent of a OMB Decision/Order, that governs this matter.

     So, as the City knew the terms settlement agreement, that there is an onus on the City to make sure the settlement agreement is up held and all they had to do was ask a couple of people, who knew what, how hard is that?.  So far there is no evidence of the City making any such effort.

In General;

     Why would City staff (Planning), not help the taxpayers Appealing to the OMB about what could happen in the “Tree Preservation Area” so that all aspects of this matter could be dealt with before the signing of the settlement?  So there would not be unpleasant surprises that make the City look so bad?  What kind of respect does this display by Hazel’s team towards taxpayers?  Would not a reasonable person see that this whole mess could have been avoid and a better deal for more trees could have been made if the City had supported community efforts once they became known?

     Why did the City not include those who Appeal to the OMB to be part of the sewer route selection?  Now, really how hard would it have been for the City or her Ward Councillor to tell Therese about the sewer, when it was being decided?   Elected officials are there to protect the public’s interest and up hold the promise of good government in Canada.  Part of that is respect for taxpayers.

Environmental concerns;

     How the sewer main in the “Tree Preservation Area” (TPA) can lead to the long term decline and death of the trees in the TPA;

A).       The nearly 30-metre (100 foot), long sewer trench through the TPA area will not
            only destroy at least a dozen of the rare trees in its path, it will most certainly affect
            the viability of the trees for 4.5-metre (10 to 15 feet), on both sides of the trench,
            along the whole length.  “Root loss, root disruption, a drying of the soils, and a local
           draw down in the water table are inevitable,” says Philip van Wassenaer, urban
            forestry consultant.

B).       The trench that the pipe is placed in, can become the path of least resistance for
            ground water to flow in and some times is called the “French drain effect”.  This
            disruption could drain or lower the local water table which will adversary affect the
            health of mature trees the most, if not kill them.  These changes to the ecology of
            the area are to a broader extent then just where the trench has been dug.  H&R
            should present any plan they have for this sewer pipes long term environmental

C).       Wind throw is also a problem in any case where trees that were surrounded by other
            trees are suddenly exposed, they are more likely to fall down in a storm.

D).       How is the site going to be maintained to keep it from being pounded into the
            ground by over use by the sudden increase in the local population caused by the
            townhouses?  So, where is the plan for the long term maintenance of the “Tree
            Preservation Area” to ensure it will remain environmentally significant?

- 4 -

     The use traditional methods - in a year or two after the damage is clear to all and trees are dying.  A study will be done to document the damage and exaggerate the rest (as has already been the case in this matter), then the City and developer in on voice will say - Oh well we tried but the trees could not be saved.  Councillor Carlson said “The woodlot wasn't rated highly by the city's foresters because it is small and surrounded by development, making its long-term prospects for survival poor”, is this not setting the stage for the self-fore-filling prophesy?

     Then develop the area as originally intended (if it can be, would be nice to have maps of the area), or something else undesirable.  Do not forget that a sewer main is just the first Devil in the details that has come to our attention, more could be on the way!  It is not just the cutting down of trees that we should be concerned with, that is just the thin edge of the wedge, that spells the end of the Bidwell woodlands.

In Closing;

     The Mayor has been quoted as saying “We followed the letter of the law 100 per cent,”.  Hazel McCallion has also said "I guess I'm identified as a people's mayor.  I‘m very concerned about people.  I find the big guys, can look after themselves.  It's really the little businesses and the little people who need help.  I'm a grassroots mayor, a peoples’s mayor.  I believe in an open-door policy and open government ... I feel it’s very important that the people feel they can talk to the mayor." & “I'm out there with my people and the
people know me."  So why is the Mayor sitting back and letting the City and the developer beat-up “the little people who need help”?

     The Mayor needs to put the developers and City staff over her knee and give them a paddling for embarrassing the City of Mississauga with their cold hearted actions and giving the Mayor such poor advice regarding this matter.  If the Mayor does not do so, then Canadians will know that in Mississauga developers truly are King & Hazel McCallion is only the obedient Queen of Sprawl.

    Please find enclosed a copy of the settlement agreement noted.

 I am willing to discuss my letter with you, in case the wording seems a little ambiguous or you want a request explained. My phone number is ********& e-mail

Sincerely yours, Donald Barber

cc:        Councillor George Carlson, Ward 6                <>
             Ms. Janice Baker, Acting City Manager        <>
             Mr. Martin Powell, Commissioner, Transportation & Works
             Mr. Edward Sajecki, Commissioner, Planning & Building
             Ms. Mary Ellen Bench, City Solicitor               <>
             Copy posted on the internet ( and media directed to it.
             Copy to the OMB members
             Copy to Developer

Dear Mayor McCallion and Ms Taylor:                  Wed, 14 Jul 2004

    For clarification purposes can you tell me exactly what this means ?

    [ This letter is in response to the Mayor's newest letter. ]

     From my limited understanding Mr. Mandelbaum was of the opinion previously that trenching through the woodlot was within the scope of the approved OMB plan, and the Settlement Agreement reached with Ms Taylor.

    This would suggest, therefore, that nothing has changed, and that the integirty of the woodlot is still threatened, and thus I request this clarification.

Thank you for your attention to this request.

Sincerely       *****

City of Mississauga
ATTN: Mayor & Councillor George Carlson

RE:     Your File C.01

Dear Mayor;                                                             July 27, 2004

       Actions speak louder then words and your lack of meaningful action clarifies the situation perfectly.  In your July 14/04, form letter to concerned Ontarians, the bottom line is a what I would call a grand falsehood from the Mayor’s office.  “Mr. Mandelbaum who confirmed that they would be proceeding with the project according to the plan approved by the Ontario Municipal Board and in accordance with the settlement agreement  you reached with the developer.”  No reasonable person believes that the agreement signed, stated there would be a sewer put in the “Tree Preservation Area” (TPA).  It is interesting that the Mayor avoids any reference or use of the words “Tree Preservation Area”.  A reasonable person would read the  Ontario Municipal Board agreement and see that item.# 4 was intended to keep Susan Karrandjas and Therese Taylor meaningfully informed and involved regarding any activity affecting the TPA and this did not occur.   The Mayor can no longer truthfully say  “We followed the letter of the law 100 per cent,” as the Mayor has given permission to developer to mock the OMB agreement and our Democracy in general.

        This matter also show that the Mayor has now become the opposite to what she has claimed, “I'm a grassroots mayor, a peoples’s mayor.”  It officially has come to an end, thanks to greed and developers.

        Your letter states, “Damian Albanese, Director of Engineering and Construction for the Region of Peel, ...  look at the possibility of an alternate location for the site servicing.” and that the “decision from Mr. Mark Mandelbaum” would decide where the sewer main went.  This means that it could have gone in other locations, that the City of Mississauga and our elected official could have got more actively involved lobbying on behalf taxpayers for a different location but I see no statement by the Mayor, Councillor George Carlson or City staff that they did so.  The map that shows the sewer route is stamped approved by the City of Mississauga and your own staff should have informed either Susan Karrandjas and Therese Taylor about any decisions about a sewer in TPA, as soon as they heard about it.  It is the Big Lie to say or even to suggest that the decision as to where the sewer went rested solely with Mr. Mark Mandelbaum or that the City was not a main player in this issue.  It is just as wrong to suggest the OMB agreement is being carried out properly.  I would say this not just morally wrong but that is the way business is done by Hazel McCallion in the City of Mississauga.

        It is important to note how silent Councillor George Carlson, the Ward 6 Councillor for the area has been on this issue, have not seen his position in writing.  Is he afraid to speak?  Is he hiding?  Does this show he is not able to handle issues in his own Ward?  Or is he too afraid to do something that could displease the Mayor?  Does this not show that it is the Mayor who pulls the strings in Council?

-1-    ....2

        This matter shows how little the Mayor cares about the “little people who need help”, about the Canadian peasant who can not afford lawyers at the drop of a hat and shows the  kind of preferential treatment developers get.  The City and the developers would never have tried this on anyone who easily had enough money for a lawyer and could take this matter to court.

Shame on you Hazel McCallion!

        I am willing to discuss my letter with you, in case the wording seems a little ambiguous or you want a request explained. My phone number is 905 *********** & e-mail

Sincerely yours, Donald Barber

cc:      Mr. Damian Albanese, Director of Engineering and Construction,
            Region of Peel
            Ms. Mary Ellen Bench, City Solicitor
            Mr. Mike Minkowski, Office of the City Solicitor
            Mrs. Taylor
            Mr. and Mrs. *******
            Mr. Glenn Gumulka
            Ms. ********
            Mr. ********
            Mr. ********
            Mr. ******** 

#.8        (ready for your letter)

Reach-out and make a difference

It will make a difference!
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