Edwards throws Assaff a “Hail Mary”


I was not at the council meeting last night. I am now officially bored with this whole Admiral Collingwood Place remediation agreement farce. It has however, been capturing the imagination of us local political wonks for the past couple of months. I will give you a layman’s update on where we are at as of last night, nevertheless.
As I predicted last week Scott Strandholt did not agree to the 18 month extension. Scott, Joe Gardhouse and Keith Hull are the only ones in town that are actually thinking about what is best for the town rather than the interests of one developer.
Mike Edwards threw one last “Hail Mary” at the situation by proposing a one year extension which would mean that the next town council will be able to deal with this situation early in their mandate. I have said from the beginning that this would be agreeable to me, but I know that there are the hawks in town that sense blood on this file and want nothing more than to see Assaff immediately bring in the excavators and start moving dirt. I now think that if Mr. Assaff has not found a way to develop or sell this property by May of next year he will be no more likely to want to fill in the hole and clean up the site then as he is now. Plus he will probably have a few of the above “Hawks” on council and will relish starting some good old fashioned “Lawfare” against all those that have done him ill. So maybe it’s best we get on with it now.
Anyway here is what happens next: The town has already voted so they are on board for the one year extension. I get the sense that a couple of the “Famous 5” have now started to see the writing on the wall and realize that if they continue to follow Assaff blindly down this road their political careers will be going the way of the dodo bird. So Assaff will realize that 1 year is all his pals can get him now so he will grab that with both hands and run. Not sure on Scott Strandholt. The one year was all he asked for in the beginning but he might be so sick and tired of this sorry affair and the bad press, he might not agree with any extension now. Remember the part that “brain dead” Nobody had been missing all along? That all parties have to sign off on this? Council has instructed both developers to go off and have another meeting and if still no agreement then they will have to enforce the existing agreement as is. Which means that the site will have to be remediated.
Don’t hold your breath on that one either, because if that scenario does actually come to pass the “Famous 5” will drag there heals as much as they can to avoid initiating enforcement. Mr. Assaff will not willingly bring in the excavators and start filling in the hole. I believe at that point this will go legal.

Remember this post:

https://viewfromanobody.wordpress.com/2014/05/26/towns-lawyers-legal-opinion-on-site-remediation-agreement/

As you can see lots of remedies for the town to enforce. But you will not see any of that happen while the “Famous 5” are on council this term or next. Three council members, the Deputy Mayor and the Mayor have actively blocked doing what is right for the community for a developer that has no firm development plan in place, no actual investors in place and no sale pending any time soon. So if you are sick of that mess at the entrance to our town you know what you have to do in October.

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3 thoughts on “Edwards throws Assaff a “Hail Mary”

  1. Here is the email the town received on Friday, that declined the motion past last Monday. Does anything in this email lead you to believe that the motion passed at last nights meeting, will be accepted?

    May 30, 2014
    Aird & Berlis LLP
    Brookfield Place, Suite 1800
    Box 754, 181 Bay Street
    Toronto, Ontario M5J 2T9
    Attention: Leo F. Longo

    Dear Sir:

    Re: Site Remediation Agreement – Admiral’s Village Inc., Admiral Collingwood
    Development Corporation and the Town of Collingwood

    You have advised that the Town, expressed through a resolution of council, wishes to
    provide Mr. Assaff’s corporation, Admiral Collingwood Development Corporation (“ACDC”),
    with an 18 month extension of the April 30, 2014 date by which he must either substantially
    commence construction on his property or fill in the excavation of it that he undertook in
    2008. You have asked for Admiral’s Village Inc.’s (“AVI”) position on this proposed
    amendment to the three party site remediation agreement.

    As indicated in earlier correspondence and at meetings with Town staff, AVI would like Mr.
    Assaff to fill in the excavation of his property in accordance with the provisions of the site
    remediation agreement. If he does not do so, AVI would like the Town to enforce the site
    remediation agreement as contemplated by section 5 of the agreement.

    In prior correspondence and at meetings with the Town, AVI indicated that it was prepared
    to accommodate ACDC’s request for an extension of the April 30, 2014 date for substantial
    commencement of construction. AVI advised that it would agree to a one year extension on
    reasonable terms. Those terms were:

    (a) That ACDC be required to remove its construction trailer and the electrical
    storage container that ACDC has located on AVI’s property in violation of the
    Town’s zoning by-law. The Town has ordered AVI to remove the construction
    trailer and the electrical storage container, failing which the Town has indicated it
    may commence legal proceedings to remove the items at the expense of AVI.

    (b) That ACDC be required to fence the eastern boundary of its property so that the
    excavation on ACDC’s property would not be accessible to the public and others
    from AVI’s property. The excavation is clearly a hazard. It was created by ACDC
    with the permission of the Town. AVI should not be required to protect the public
    from this hazard.

    These conditions are both reasonable and reflect AVI’s legitimate concerns.
    The Town has not addressed these conditions and appears to have dismissed AVI’s
    concerns without consideration.

    Council’s sole objective seems to be to provide Mr. Assaff with an extension of the date for
    filling his excavation, without regard to the impact that the excavation has on the use of the
    AVI property, the marketability of the AVI property or the safety of the public.

    As you know, in April this year the Town issued orders directing both AVI and ACDC to
    comply with the Town’s property standards by-law. AVI has complied with the order issued
    to it. ACDC has chosen to exercise its right to appeal the order issued to it, with the result
    that the fencing around the ACDC site remains in disrepair and ACDC’s large pile of fill
    located adjacent to the AVI and Scotiabank properties remains.

    In the circumstances, AVI is not prepared to agree to an amendment of the site remediation
    agreement to merely allow ACDC a further 18 months to commence construction or fill in its
    excavation.

    If any of the above requires clarification, please do not hesitate to contact me.

    Yours very truly,

    CHRISTIE/CUMMINGS
    Per:
    “Stephen Christie”
    Stephen J. D. Christie
    Copy

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