Maple Pool Lawsuit Resolved!

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We are a group of Courtenay voters united by a common conviction that the legal persecution of Maple Pool and its residents by Courtenay City Council is perverse, morally reprehensible, and fundamentally contrary to the interests of this community. It is also a gross and inexcusable waste of the taxpayers’ money. Learn more about us in our Mission Statement >>

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Maple Pool protest creates animosity among friends

Friends of Maple Pool held a protest march on Monday. Around 60 people that included city council hopefuls came out to rally against the city’s on-going lawsuit against Maple Pool for non-conforming to the city’s land-use bylaws. They started at Simms Park and then marched on to city hall where they called for the end to the lawsuit. The group was able to relay their message loud and clear. However, the protest also stirred an added controversy, but not at city council. It has started a discord in the ranks of the Friends of Maple Pool group. One member, Andrew Gower, publicly vented his personal frustration over the group’s action. He indicated some people, who have a vested interest in the coming municipal elections, instigated the protest. He felt the Maple Pool case has been politicized and is being used by some candidates to either get elected or for some others, get re-elected. Gower, who has helped the owners of the controversial campsite Jin and Dali Lin in the last three years, has stated this in a lengthy letter he posted on a blog and also shared it on the Friends of Maple Pool facebook page. (It is also online in the Letter section of The local businessman indicated that the protest was the brainchild of council hopeful Bob Wells. The march he said was nothing more than just “political grandstanding.” Gower’s letter, however, ended up being read at the last regular council meeting. It was brought forward by councillor Doug Hillian. While he acknowledged that Maple Pool is an outstanding issue and is on top of the...

Some interesting things in the last issue of the Record prior to the civic election. Firstly a statement on the front page attributed to incumbent Councillor Hillian who states “Unfortunately, this issue has been politicized”. My comment to this is that elected officials have been voting to pursue this unfair and unpopular lawsuit and now we are in the final days before the election. An election is where the voters decide to keep incumbents thus endorsing their actions while in office, or vote in new community leaders. It is nice that at least we have acknowledgement from an incumbent that the Maple Pool issue is, in fact, an issue in this election. We had heard previously that some incumbents held the belief that Maple Pool would not be an issue. It is encouraging that our caring community has finally come to the attention of at least three incumbents. Councillor Starr Winchester is quoted in the article as stating that she “concurs that “vulnerable” members of the community have been used as a “political football”. Our mission statement on our website is very clear. “We are a group of Courtenay voters united by a common conviction that the legal persecution of Maple Pool and its residents by Courtenay City Council is perverse, morally reprehensible, and fundamentally contrary to the interests of this community. It is also a gross and inexcusable waste of the taxpayers’ money. ………..we come from right across the political spectrum. We would disagree amongst ourselves on many other issues. But we are all convinced that this indefensible four year legal vendetta against some of Courtenay’s most vulnerable citizens, together with the ongoing harassment of and defamation against two of Courtenay’s most civic-minded...

Letter from Jin & Dali Lin of Maple Pool

As you know that Friends of Maple Pool had organized a march on City Hall on Nov 10, it went well. After then, we feel that I have something to say, to express our gratitude to our community. It is so grateful to feel the care from friends who we know and we haven’t met, we know that we are not alone. The peaceful march on Nov 10, was successfully. It was on the CTV evening news on the same day, you may visit CTV web as follow:  Thank you so much to those folks who showed up and joined on march, thank to many people who tooted the horn and passed the energy to us. Many good people with a caring heart are in Comox Valley, they must are helping less fortunate in a different way. We hope that all incumbent elected official heard the voice  from every corner of community, and wish this not that “complicated issue” can be solved after the election 2014. Everyone deserve a respect, everyone has a right a say; all equal. I believe that  a true leader is one who is humble enough to admit their mistake, use their wisdom to fix whatever the problem is. A couple of quote to share: “Good leaders must first become Good servants” – Robert Greenleaf , “The time is always right to do what is right.” – Martin Luther King Jr.   Jin & Dali Lin of Maple...

Privacy inquiry hearing regarding Maple Pool lawsuit voting record moves forward

posted Nov 13, 2014 at 11:00 AM Courtenay resident and longtime Friends of Maple Pool advocate Dick Clancy is pleased to announce that a date for the Office of the Information and Privacy Commission Inquiry has been confirmed. At issue is the release of the much-awaited voting record of Courtenay’s mayor and six councillors on how they individually voted at in camera meetings with regard to the Maple Pool lawsuit. The OIPC requires that all the “in camera” material must be submitted before Nov. 12. Submissions from Clancy’s legal counsel as well as the City of Courtenay are due no later than Nov. 19. The final hearing will be conducted on Dec. 5. Clancy further notes that the responsibility to withhold the information from becoming public, also referred to as “the burden of proof”, rests solely with the city. He states that task may be very difficult to achieve. Evidence will be provided to the Privacy Commissioner that several Courtenay councillors have pierced the veil of secrecy by discussing the matter outside the confines of the in camera meetings and therefore the city’s argument to further withhold the information is without foundation. Clancy maintains that some elected officials actually campaigned for election in 2011 stating that they would terminate the lawsuit but have then gone behind closed doors and voted to pursue this unpopular action. “I believe that this shakes the very core of our democratic system,” said Clancy. “I am not seeking the substance of the in camera deliberations but simply the voting records of the individual elected officials. It is regrettable that we will not get the...

Statements from Andrew Gower with Responses from FOMP

Statements from Andrew Gower with Responses from FOMP The statements below are from Andrew Gower with responses from our organization. Judge for yourself. Mr. Gower; I am writing this letter to set the record straight, vent some frustration and, hopefully, provide some education. While I have been listed as a “Friend of Maple Pool”, this letter contains my opinions and understanding of the situation, and does not represent the views of the Friends, the Lins, or my company, Wedler Engineering LLP. This letter is my personal view and understanding of the facts, and as such, any errors are also mine. The property on which the Maple Pool campsite sits is currently zoned R1-A. This is a residential zoning that only allows a house, secondary structures, home occupation and, in some cases, agricultural uses. Prior to being annexed by the City, the property was zoned CR-4 – a country residential zoning under the Comox Strathcona Regional District with similar restrictions. The Maple Pool property has never, in its history of operation as a campsite, had zoning that allows the historical use as a seasonal campsite. FOMP Response: True, but absolutely irrelevant. “Legal non-conforming status” arises when the usage of a property predates the zoning bylaw. It simply means that a bylaw cannot be applied retroactively. We are arguing that use for year round residence predated the 1983 bylaw of the regional district. The details of the present zoning don’t matter, because the bylaw does not apply to this property.   Mr. Gower; The City of Courtenay had allowed, and documented, that the use of the Maple Pool site as a “seasonal...