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We Choose Option "0"

THANK YOU! Thank you to so many from our Communities for coming out to the 2nd Public Information Centre (PIC#2) held by St Marys CBM as part of the Haul Route Study for their proposed open pit mine. We asked you to come out and you did in large numbers. We sent a strong message to St Marys and to government decision makers at all levels that we remain united and opposed to this intrusive development in our communities.

We all know that one of the key issues here is water, water, and water. Witness the recent public health notification from the Hamilton Medical Officer of Health staff regarding the Permit to Take Water for just a test of the unproven and theoretical groundwater recirculation pumping system. They highlighted the risks of adverse impacts to our drinking water quantity and quality. Evaluating possible haul routes is putting the proverbial cart before the horse when the basic fundamentals have not been addressed.

The reality though is that St Marys is allowed to follow parallel processes, whether we like it or not. So as St Marys and their consultants repeatedly described our roads as "deficient", we told them that the roads work for us - whether we are driving to work, school or play, whether we are cycling, riding horses, jogging, or out for a stroll - and that we appreciate the natural beauty surrounding them. We continued to point out that St Marys is not being a "good neighbour" - on top of unauthorized boreholes and other missteps, the company still refuses to share draft technical reports with the community's designated representatives. We challenged the "assumptive close" consultation approach being used for the haul route study which assumes approval of the development and focuses feedback on St Marys' preferences. And we pointed out key missing data - Campbellville Road's use as the alternate when the 401 is closed; Centre Road's use as the alternate when #6 is closed; school bus routes; the presence of hills, bridges and other visibility issues; and more...

So...where do we go from here?

The deadline for submitting comments on PIC#2 is December 31, 2007. If you haven't submitted the questionnaire, please remember that whether you fill in St Marys' questionnaire or submit your own comments, write as a Citizen of the Community. You may not live or drive on one of the proposed haul routes yourself but it is important to remember that one of your community neighbours, a friend of your child's, a school bus, or an emergency vehicle does. Don't let St Marys divide and conquer the Community. Point out the problems as you see them with all the haul route options.

The next Public Information Centre (PIC#3) is being planned for January 9, 2008 at the Carlisle Arena. It's hard to believe that St Marys and their consultants will have enough time to thoroughly digest our Community comments due just before New Year's and give them full credence two weeks later, but their self serving approach to this process continues. Given our concerns about our drinking water, the haul route process, and the specifics raised at PIC#2, there is a legitimate question about whether we should participate in these meetings as a Community or not, and, if so, how.

Ultimately, it is now up to us as individuals to decide whether to attend or not. As a Community, we chose to unite, to pool our resources, to speak with one voice, and to intervene substantively and professionally. We have done that effectively for the last 3 years and have been clear that we are not just some "NIMBY" group. We should continue to follow that path. Know that as an individual family, if you choose not to attend, that you will be represented by FORCE. And, as a Community, we will participate for one purpose only, to get our message  that there are no acceptable haul routes - across to the decision-makers. We are not participating to help St Marys. We are participating to re-enforce existing knowledge and to further educate municipal and provincial decision-makers regarding our legitimate reasons for opposing this proposed industrial operation in the midst of our communities.



Together We Will Succeed!