By Barbara Milne
Published August 13, 2013
I am so baffled. It is a good thing that the demands of The Pearl Company and vicinity keep Gary and I so busy. It helps distract our minds from the fact that our zoning issues continue to be unresolved seven years on.
Our case, which came to by-law court last summer, was heard by a justice of the peace, Justice Casey, of the Provincial Court of Ontario. The judgment was very clearly in our favour and can be read in its entirety at the bottom of this RTH article.
Here's the summary:
The Pearl is doing exactly what the city wants arts endeavours to do and in an area in which they want them to do it.
Any citizen buying a building that is taxed commercially has a right to maintain a commercial business in that building.
The New Official Plan (not yet in place, but coming) gives The Pearl the zoning that it requires.
The City presented no evidence to contradict the case that was put forward by The Pearl Co.; in fact, they presented no evidence at all.
Because she would be ruling in an area that would be precedent-setting, Justice Casey preferred to remand her judgment for a year in order to give the city time to fix the situation. We waited, expecting to be approached with a solution. Nothing. A year later, nothing.
Now that the year is up, we return to court this coming Wednesday, August 14. What will Justice Casey do? What must she think about the inaction of an entire city council and its bureaucracy? How is she to resolve it? Does she stand by her ruling? Or might she feel she has to pass it off to another court?
We will be at the Sopinka Courthouse Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013 at 1:30 PM. If you are in the area and can't stand the suspense, please come by. A show of support would be lovely.
You will hear me screaming - with joy or with horror - when the gavel falls. After seven years I think my biggest question is: How much has this cost? Cost the taxpayers of Hamilton? Cost me? Cost Gary? How much will it continue to cost?
Maybe we shouldn't go there.
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