Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Let's all go to the OMB

Fun, my two main reporting beats intersect.
Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake council has maintained its stance in zoning a plot of land targeted for new elementary school in Virgil, zoning it residential. Its committee of adjustment has rejected a severance application from the existing landowner so the board can buy the land. The board has appealed the denied severance to the Ontario Municipal Board. Councillors are openly admitting, implied in commentary, they're stiffing the District School Board of Niagara because of trustees' decision on Niagara District Secondary School.
Coun. Andrea Kaiser said the eight- acre site in Virgil is needed for residential development and pointed out that the NDSS site is already zoned institutional.
“This community was misled and taken down a garden path,” Coun. Gary Zalepa said regarding the process followed by the school board that resulted in a recommendation to close the high school in 2010 if enrolment does not reach 350 students by October this year. The school is about 100 students short.
Councillors Jack Lowrey and Art Viola voted against residential zoning for the proposed new elementary school site.
“We have a chance for an elementary school in Virgil,” Lowrey said. “Are we going to keep making the students in Virgil wait for accommodation?”
The community is speaking out on this one as well-- head on over to the main site to see a snippet of what it is encouraging people to do: tell council to back down and give these students a new school.


Mark Hicks said...

Let them go to the OMB. I cannot wait till the OMB decides to dig under the covers to find out why a community is so outraged by a school board...maybe then NOTL will be heard and the DSBN will be exposed for their wrongdoings, and bring some accountability to this board.

Daniel Feuer said...

It's unfortunate that Niagara-on-the-Lake must waste taxpayer dollars fighting a battle with the DSBN at the OMB. NOTL Town Council is also putting millions of dollars of funding for the new Virgil elementary school in jeopardy. The DSBN is just doing what the ARC supported, NOTL Town Council Supported (by supporting the ARC) and community majority supported - three neighbourhood based elementary schools.

Anonymous said...

It has come to my attention that members of the DSBN staff, especially the supervisors of property etc. use the resources of the DSBN for personal projects around their homes and bury the costs in the budget. Bill Okanik has been one person mentioned in the gossip. This sense of entitlement must be looked into and stopped. One wonders why there are so much cost overruns?