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GRCA defers quarry application consideration

ROCKWOOD - The Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA) board of directors received a new staff report on the proposed quarry outside of Rockwood  on April 28.

The report noted the GRCA has asked that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Wellington County and Guelph-Eramosa Township to defer consideration of the application until James Dick Construction Limited (JDCL) completes additional groundwater analysis.

The report outlined several steps for this analysis, including groundwater modeling and an updated ecological assessment.

“The proposal is for an aggregate extraction operation of nearly 25 hectares that is two kilometres east of Rockwood,” a GRCA newsletter states.

“It has a tributary of Blue Springs running through it, while two other tributaries and some wetlands are nearby.”

The new review was made after JDCL’s second application to Guelph-Eramosa Township.

A quarry application first came to council in December 2012 and was sent to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) by JDCL officials in the summer of 2015 when the township did not make a decision in the required time frame.

JDCL reapplied in December after OMB vice-chair Steve Stefanko adjourned a hearing to decide the quarry’s fate on Oct. 13.

Under the new guidelines JDCL was required to apply to Guelph-Eramosa Township for rezoning and to Wellington County for an Official Plan amendment permitting aggregate mining.

GRCA staff will review the new studies when submitted by JDCL, and determine if the additional information indicates a need to re-evaluate the application and potential impacts of the proposed quarry.

In its current review, the GRCA considered studies undertaken since 2014, several of them developed by consultants working on behalf of the Concerned Residents Coalition (CRC), a community group with supporters in both Wellington County and Halton Region.

The report recommends that the applicant revise the hydrogeological model through a series of concrete steps before the application can be properly assessed.

“While it is not yet known whether JDCL will act on these recommendations, it is clear that such work would require at least two years, and would likely delay any appeals to the Ontario Municipal Board,” CRC officials state.

The GRCA has provided technical review comments in an advisory capacity, based on the GRCA’s memo of understanding with Wellington County.

 

May 19, 2017

 
 

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