facebook link
twitter link
Stop Light Monitor - Green


Have you made your annual contribution? Click the"Make a Commitment"
button below.

Make a Contribution



Hamilton stands strongly beside Province and FORCE

FORCE has received notice that the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) will hold a prehearing conference about St Marys Cement's application to have the Ministerial Zoning Order (MZO) revoked on April 1, 2011 in Hamilton. The MZO was issued by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing in April 2010. It froze the current zoning on the proposed quarry site – griculture and Conservation Management – effectively stopping the quarry. St Marys Cement quickly filed a request for revocation of the MZO and asked for a hearing before the OMB. The Minister referred the matter to the Board in October 2010.

The prehearing conference is scheduled for one day in April. It is, however, just the beginning. The OMB hearings officer will start to address matters such who the interested and affected parties are, what the issues are, how much time the main hearing should be expected to take and what dates should be scheduled. St Marys Cement and its legal counsel will have status and be present at the prehearing conference since SMC made the request for hearing and filed the application to revoke the MZO. The Provincial Government also has status before the OMB since it made the decision which is being challenged. The Province will be represented by legal counsel for the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

FORCE and our Communities' lawyers will be there to seek status, on behalf of our Communities, to oppose St Marys Cement's application to revoke the MZO.

The City of Hamilton is standing strongly beside the Province and FORCE. Council voted on January 26, 2011 to actively oppose St Marys Cement's application to revoke the MZO. Council approved the Planning Committee's decisions of January 18, 2011. Hamilton will be seeking party status to participate fully in the hearing. Council has authorized its staff to appear and give evidence and has authorized staff to retain outside experts and legal counsel as needed. Halton Region and its affected municipalities, Milton and Burlington, will also make decisions about their collective role in the hearing in the coming weeks.

The OMB notice about the prehearing conference in April is also notice to our Communities that the main hearing is "just around the corner". We must be ready – substantively and financially.

The MZO is a significant intervention by the Province, in response to requests for action and concerns raised by Hamilton, Halton and their respective Medical Officers of Health. These municipal calls for action were based on their own staff, agency, and peer reviewers' analyses, FORCE's strong technical experts' work, and on all of the objections from our Communities' residents and stakeholders. The MZO has changed the momentum of the aggregate approvals process in favour of objections to the proposed quarry. Now, our communities need to stay engaged in order to complete what we set out to do – Stop the Quarry.

We need to keep doing what we have shown works – pooling our resources, bringing our Communities' unique perspectives and strong case arguments to the table, working with the provincial and municipal governments, their agencies, and other key stakeholders, and ensuring we are represented by the best legal and technical expert teams possible.


Together We Will Succeed!