To Affect Change to the Muskoka River Management Plan.

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Without Prejudice

 

Dear Premier Ford;

My name is Martin Ford. I am a long-term resident and business owner in the Town of Bala. I have initiated this petition to request that the Progressive Conservative Government,

“For the People of Ontario,” implement three changes:

·      The first request is to change the Muskoka River Management Plan that was enacted by the previous Liberal government with their green energy plan.

·      The current plan from 2006 was authored by the power generating companies with agreement from the Ministry of Energy and the MNRF.

·      Since the implementation of the 2006 Muskoka River Management Plan has had many floods. In 2013, it was called the flood of the century. Six years later we are dealing an even greater flood and more devastation due to the mismanagement of this watershed. This watershed has flooded at least 4 of the last 6 years!

·      Prior to the 2006 Muskoka River Management Plan, the water was managed by local resources and amazingly so – we had high water but no flooding!

·      Without a change to the Muskoka River Management Plan, the government risks long term and continuous damage to an area that is recognized world-wide as a jewel.

·      A policy change is needed!

·      The second request is for the government of Ontario to implement a wholesale change to the bureaucrats that are responsible for managing the Muskoka River Management Plan!

·      It has been communicated that MNRF held back the water at Bracebridge to allow Swift River to complete some work at their Bala Hydro-generation project before the spring melt.

·      This is not about global climate change.

·      This is about the MISMANAGEMENT of the Muskoka Watershed!

·      State of emergencies have been declared and the MNRF have flooded areas from Huntsville straight through to Bala and down the Moon River for the benefit of a single private developer, Swift River, and a project that MNRF supports.

·      The Muskoka Watershed should NOT be controlled by any private companies. It should be properly managed by the Provincial Government of Ontario, “For the People”.

·      The third request is for local resources to be active participants in the development of a new Muskoka Watershed Management Plan.

·      Leveraging the elder community members who understand the Muskoka watershed and who managed it for 100 years.

·      A new plan cannot be developed by just the bureaucrats, the power companies, and their professional engineers that will ensure the plan meets their private interests. This is a change “For the People to Save Muskoka” and we suspect that it should be extended to other areas of Ontario that are experiencing similar situations based on the mismanagement of watersheds.

·      This plan needs to include the expansion of some potential dam locations to assist with the quick, abundant flow of water and the elimination of flooding.

·      Muskoka is for all people and this type of flooding is devastating to many long-term businesses and employees.

Sincerely,

Martin Ford