On June 30, 2015, the Moon River Property Owners Association was notified by this Notice of Trespass that the proponent would instruct the Ontario Provincial Police to arrest anyone attending this year’s free cake, ice cream, and music Canada Day celebration in Margaret Burgess Park. This is the Crown land owned by the province, directly north of the Bala north falls, which has been the site of this fun family-oriented event for the past four years.
Not only is this park the same as it has been for the past 50 years (no construction, no changes), but the Township of Muskoka Lakes has recently accepted the proponent’s offer to not impact or change Margaret Burgess Park, in return for the proponent being able to instead use the Township’s Portage Landing to facilitate their proposed construction.
The proponent is therefore not only reneging on their agreement, they are needlessly controlling use of this public land. This is worrisome as the MNR is giving the proponent complete control of this and other prime public land in Bala for the next 40 years.
Over 60 members of the public attended the Township of Muskoka Lakes Council Special Council meeting on July 3, 2015 expecting the issue of the proponent reneging on their accepted offer would be discussed and that the MRPOA could delegate on this issue as their event was the next day. However, instead of either, the Mayor had the OPP called to Council chambers, as reported in Built Heritage News.
As shown by this e-mail thread, the proponent refused our requests to provide evidence they have authority to issue such a Notice of Trespass (we received a similar notice for an unrelated event the same day), or to inform us how requests for permission to use the park are to be submitted, how much in advance, and for what types of events.
This proponent is out of control and must be stopped.