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North York Council names street "OMB Folly"

Mike in TO

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There's that one case up in Innisfil that the Toronto Star is talking about, where the OMB will rule if the homeowners in the area will have to pay the expenses of the developer. The OMB agreed to hear the case, and while the homeowners lost, the developer's bill came to over $3 Million!

The developers bill came in far far above $3m, they are only going after a small portion of the expenses that were completely wasted during a frivolous OMB appeal by some of the local ratepayers and an environmental organization - they have to take some responsibility for making an appeal they had no chance of winning in which the only purpose appeared to be delay delay delay in the hopes that the developer would get frustrated pack his bags and leave. I'm not suggesting the development is 'good' or 'bad' - simply that there was little to no basis for an appeal and the evidence (or lack thereof) and witnesses (or lack thereof) wasted a ton of money and peoples time.
 

wardwatcher

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OMB Folly

The NY Councillors are a great example of what is wrong with this city. These guys are making a big deal out of a small job. I agree that Toronto Council has done more to retain the OMB than anything. Most of them are ignorant of that which they are supposed to be guarding!
 

waterloowarrior

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'Annoying' man spared $40,000 OMB legal bill
But board chair chides North York man for waging an ill-prepared battle against condo driveway
Mar 26, 2009 04:30 AM
Comments on this story (45)
RAVEENA AULAKH
STAFF REPORTER
Note: This article has been edited to correct a previously published version.

A North York man who waged a losing battle against a condo building has been spared having to pay the developer's legal costs but was slammed by the Ontario Municipal Board for actions that were "frustrating and annoying."

In the ruling delivered this week, OMB chair Reid Rossi came down heavily on Sergiy Kaznadiy, calling him an unsophisticated witness who did not plan properly for the hearing on his appeal last October. Kaznadiy had accused the traffic expert involved in the case of fabricating data.

Kaznadiy went to the board last year in a bid to block Elm Sheppard Inc., which was building the condos, from placing a driveway on Yeomans Rd.

He contended the road was too narrow and that condo traffic would add to the congestion.

Kaznadiy, who lives on nearby Alexis Blvd., said he had been the victim of two accidents at Yeomans Rd. and Sheppard Ave., which resulted from crowded traffic.

The board ruled in favour of the developer, who then brought a motion for costs against Kaznadiy.

Christopher Williams, lawyer for the developer, called Kaznadiy's actions "unreasonable, frivolous and vexatious" and sought $40,000, the costs incurred at the hearing.

Williams argued Kaznadiy did not co-operate with the city or the developer on clarifying the issues, requested an adjournment but failed to inform the developer, did not present any evidence of valid planning reasons and didn't bring any experts to support his claims at the one-day hearing.

At last week's hearing for costs, Williams told the chair that Kaznadiy and his wife regularly attended town-hall meetings when the project was being discussed and understood what was expected from them at an OMB hearing.

"I thought he would retain lawyers and experts," said Williams.

"But he even failed to answer any correspondence. To me, it shows a pattern of unreasonable conduct."

Kaznadiy replied he couldn't afford lawyers but admitted he was unfamiliar with the workings of the board and may have made mistakes, such as requesting adjournment but failing to inform everyone.

"My lack of experience should not mean penalizing me for costs," he told the chair, adding that he was stressed and scared by his two traffic accidents.

"I made the appeal in despair ... to the traffic conditions."

Kaznadiy and his wife's unfamiliarity with procedures was obvious at the hearing, when she interrupted the proceedings twice. The second time, an irate Rossi asked her to refrain, "or I'll have to ask everyone to clear the gallery."

Later, he asked Kaznadiy what he expected when he approached the board.

"I didn't want to malign anyone ... I only wanted them to change the driveway and hoped the OMB with its professional experience would do that," said Kaznadiy.

In the three-page decision, Rossi, who also heard the original case, denied the developer's request for costs, saying that, "as frustrating and annoying as the appellant's actions may be, his performance at the hearing did not breach the requisite bar as called for under the rules."

The 53-year-old Kaznadiy, who works for a bottled water company in Toronto, said he was relieved and happy with the ruling.

"I was just a resident concerned with the traffic situation," he said yesterday.

"I'm grateful the board understood that."

"I surfed the Internet and made my points," he added. "But if I was unprepared, all I can say is I tried to do my best."




here's a link to the original decision... too bad we don't have something like the UK system where most appeals can just be dismissed/resolved in writing.

http://www.omb.gov.on.ca/e-decisions/pl080452-Oct-30-2008.pdf
 
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MisterF

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1) Even if they wanted to, can Toronto adopt something along the lines of Vancouver's system without provincial legislation?
I realize this post is a few months old, but the answer is no. Every municipality in Ontario has to play by provincial rules as laid out in the Planning Act, Municipal Act, etc.

Maybe I'm missing something here. What is the big deal with townhouses? By that, I mean why would they even care that detached homes are being replaced with townhouses?
Objection to any kind of infill is very common.
 

Whoaccio

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Hasn't anybody watched Law and Order? Don't bloody represent yourself, it just wastes the court's time and your's. How hard would it have been for this Kaznadiy to actually get his case heard? Given how amateurish and incompetent it sounds from the Star articles, I am surprised it was even allowed. I hope this kind of crap doesn't happen often.
 

ckim500

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Petition "omb folly"!

Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the development, it has been approved. The street name "OMB Folly" does not represent the community's true history and identity and carries with it a negative undertone that burdens the existing and new community members. Petition to City Council to rename the street "Connfield Lane"!

http://www.toronto.ca/involved/statutorynotices/archive2009/apr/sn_ny_042109.htm
 

waterloowarrior

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OMB Folly 'ridiculous' street name, Miller told
Angry homebuyer wants new moniker
April 09, 2009
PAUL MOLONEY
CITY HALL BUREAU
Charlene Schafer says the real folly is to think she would want to live on a street named OMB Folly.

Shafer and her fiancé had decided to buy a townhouse in a North York development before local politicians named the new access road OMB Folly as a dig at the Ontario Municipal Board.

The new name, okayed last fall, had been suggested by Councillor John Filion (Ward 23, Willowdale), who was upset the OMB approved the development even though it contravened the city's Official Plan.

Schafer has written to Mayor David Miller and councillors urging them to go back to what was recommended originally by city staff: Connfield Lane, after early landowner John Conn.

Schafer called it childish and irresponsible to go with OMB Folly, a "ridiculous" name she says does nothing for the development, where townhouse units are priced at $690,000 to $920,000. Site preparation is to start in June.

"We just felt it was very inappropriate for elected officials to be toying around with people's investment and purchases in the city," she said in an interview. "And we felt it was very derogatory to the Ontario Municipal Board."

Mayor David Miller responded to Schafer's letter by saying he didn't support the chosen name, and suggested she speak with Filion.

The name-change bylaw is up for approval April 21 at North York community council, but Filion said he won't support a switch. He considers the matter closed after the community council voted 7-2 to recommend OMB Folly, and city council approved it, 14-13.

A representative for Hallstone Group, the developer, wanted Filion to meet with residents, but the councillor said he hasn't seen a lot of opposition to the name.

"The neighbours are all completely in favour of OMB Folly."

But North York Councillor Mike Feldman sides with purchasers.

"The whole idea is some councillors are mad at the OMB, so let's make it difficult for the developer. It's nonsense. I'm hoping that clearer heads will prevail at community council."
 

activeday

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OMB rules against Snow Dump

It is unfortunate that in a city as presently dysfunctional as Toronto is ( at present ), we would have the chutzpah to criticize the OMB.

Honestly, let's please clean up our own back yard first - then criticize others. After hearing almost daily on radio, tv and paper about things such as the "Executive Commitee", and the ongoing waste at city hall, are you not embarassed that we would focus our attention on others before looking in our own back yard? Why wouldn't you create a post about the problems in Toronto ????

One thing the OMB did that was great ( honestly ) was to look at how Ottawa was "dumping" snow waste - and the massive problems it was causing ( environmental, aestheic, etc ).

I leave this link to your pursual - it shows how the OMB is not the "big evil monter" but rather, in this case, a protector of the people in Ottawa.

http://www.omb.gov.on.ca/e-decisions/pl030492_%231527.pdf

Maybe before we create posts that criticize others, we should clean up our own back yard? Here's what Toronto allows, that I think Ottawa is now actually banning:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUNSqLq8_7E


Please drop the Toronto "ego" - as we are now a suburb, it's a little embarrasing.
 
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waterloowarrior

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OMB Folly volleyed to city council
Posted: April 21, 2009, 6:13 PM by Allison Hanes
Filed under: North York Community Council,OMB Folly

Toronto city council will have final say over an attempt to shame the Ontario Municipal Board by naming a North York street in its dishonour.

After a raucus debate community council yesterday adopted "OMB Folly" as the official name of a new street in a condo development the city opposed by the OMB approved.

Councillor John Filion (Willowdale) suggested the ironic monicker on a whim a few months back and was surprised to win overwhelming support from fellow councillors.

Now that residents of the new development are fighting back against their new street's name, saying it is humiliating and will devalue properties, some councillors were willing to back off.

But not enough to change the decision. Councillors Filion, Howard Moscoe (Eglinton Lawrence), Karen Stintz (Eglinton Lawrence), Cliff Jenkins (Don Valley West) and David Shiner (Willowdale) were among those who upheld the silly name today in spite of protests.

Councillors Shelley Carroll (Don Valley East), John Parker (Don Valley West), Mike Feldman (York Centre) and Denzil Minnan-Wong (Don Valley East) argued it was time to back off.

"We said 'enough is enough,'" said Mr. Minnan-Wong. "They made their point. We should reverse it. The people who are going to live on this street are going to be affected and that's wrong."

The matter heads to the next city council meeting where it is sure to become a flashpoint for members' frustration over OMB decisions that overrule city planning.
 

waterloowarrior

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North York street fight shows need for OMB
JOHN BARBER
E-mail John Barber | Read Bio | Latest Columns
April 22, 2009
jbarber@globeandmail.com

***

It might have been funny once, the first time North York Community Council voted to name a new street "OMB Folly," thereby to express its displeasure with the developer who intends to build the street and the provincial tribunal that gave him permission to do so.

But yesterday, when North York council stuck by the decision in the face of pleas from soon-to-be taxpayers who intend to live on the street, the old joke was just what the protesters said: "childish and irresponsible." The annals of municipal pettiness record no more telling indictment than yesterday's debate on OMB Folly.

In one painful episode, North York politicians and leading activists demonstrated the opposite of what they intended, showing not why the Ontario Municipal Board must go, but why it is still sadly necessary. Who would trust such figures to make important decisions on their own, without strict supervision?

Not one of the politicians who voted to stick with OMB Folly had the nerve to address the point made by those fated to live there, namely that they are being made the "innocent victims" of a bad joke, one moreover that violates established policy banning "cumbersome, corrupted ... discriminatory or derogatory" street names.

"Stop name calling and act responsibly," one demanded, adding that it is "shameful to see our elected officials involved in games one would only expect to see in the school yard."

In response, Councillor John Filion, the brains behind OMB Folly, assured would-be constituents their complaints were moot because the developer will fail to build the houses he has promised them. "I don't know that for a fact, but I think it's highly likely," he said.

Even more outrageous were the self-righteous activists - future neighbours - who lectured the buyers on their complicity with an "unethical developer" responsible for the hideous crime of "multi-family encroachment," i.e. townhouses. "The purpose of this street name is to protest this great injustice we believe we have suffered at the OMB," one said. As an example of injustice, she singled out the misspelling of a friend's name in the controversial decision that permitted the development. "This is the level of hurt our neighbourhood has suffered at the hands of the OMB," she said.

In vain did the sane protest.

"The fun's over, the point's been made," said Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, adding that it is "just wrong" for council to express its displeasure with the development by abusing the people who might choose to live there.

Similarly, Councillor Shelley Carroll made no headway with a little speech that should be required listening for every activist who approaches city hall. "I know something about activism," she said, describing how her own experience taught her the crucial lesson of that trade: "You aren't going to get anywhere without credibility."

Practical jokes are not activism, she said. They change nothing. "You don't diminish the power. You diminish yourselves, and you spend the next few years recovering from that."

Far better, she concluded, to accept temporary setbacks and stick to the "long game" of pressing Queen's Park for OMB reform. "This government must retain its credibility."

With a decisive 6-4 vote, North York council decided instead to throw it away.

By the time the foolish street name is finally rejected, nobody will have a valid complaint against the star chamber forced to do it.
 

fiendishlibrarian

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^ Mods, please ban this tinfoil hat douchebag, as he/she/it is now venturing into official troll territory and spamming multiple threads.
 

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