More on farms

David Daniels, one of our regular readers, made a submission at the recent meeting on the re-zoning of Greenwich land . He has sent his full presentation to us for publication since media reports of necessity leave out much of the detail. It is 39 pages and in pdf format so we have attached it as a link below rather than copy it all in.

Daniels submission

We do copy below this portion – what Mayor Stead said the Town concerns were.

In a letter to then Warden Fred Whalen, dated October 25, 2010, the Mayor of the Town of Wolfville, Robert Stead, sets out the Town’s concerns about the proposal and why it may have a negative impact upon the Town and the general region.  The concerns are: (1) Infrastructure costs.  It would be better for development to take place in existing growth centres in Kings County.  “There is likely significant extra capacity within all the Kings County growth centres including the Towns of Kentville and Berwick.  Development can take place in the existing growth centres without the need to extend off site services and in many cases infill development can take place without the need for any additional on-site services as well.”  (2) There is a need to preserve all farmland. The proposal’s attempt to preserve best soils through the designation of Urban Agriculture will likely not achieve that end.  (3) Development in existing growth centres has sustainability advantages.  (4) Social/Cultural Issues.  The existing growth centres represent the heart of social and cultural interaction and the creation of another growth centre will weaken the existing growth centres. (5) Lifestyle/Health Issues. “Development in Greenwich, away from the existing commercial centres, will not encourage this healthy lifestyle.”

Our emphasis, not Mr. Daniels.  And here is our Translation:”‘Canada Lives Here‘ in Wolfville and that’s the way it should stay even though it costs an arm and a leg. We need the taxes so we can continue spending like there is no tomorrow.”

We wish these issues were adjudicated rationally instead of with the emotion betrayed at the meeting. Candles and a soulful rendition of Amazing Grace are sweet but don’t cut the mustard when it comes to significant decisions like this one.

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3 responses to “More on farms

  1. Mayor Stead is error personified. One could write a book detailing the errors that this guy can make within a single paragraph. Don’t worry, I won’t…

    Mayor Stead does not seem to understand that a farm is a business and a business must run at a profit. The “farms” in question are as much retail businesses as they are “farms”. That is to be expected, their location and size is very limiting for competitive modern farming.

    Not content with mismanaging Wolfville, Mayor Stead seeks to prevent any business activity that does not conform with his mind-numbingly narrow world view. Mayor Stead and all the other arm chair farmers should either pick up a shovel or get out of the way.

    OK, I’ve had my rant. Now for a positive suggestion to wet the pants of all those proponents of “Urban Agriculture”. Hennigar’s Farm does a nice commercial flower garden every year. Perhaps we could offer Mr Hennigar the dirt at Clock Park so he could grow another commercial flower garden. Perhaps Mr Hennigar could turn a profit from it? Better than having Mayor Stead bury many hundreds of thousands of your dollars into that forlorn field, don’t you think?

  2. It is rather puzzling that in 2007 and 2008 when four farmers, these same ones I believe, wanted to have their lands annexed by Wolfville, the County was against it. The County , or at least Councillor Parker, accused Wolfville of considering annexation in a closed meeting. Mayor Stead denied it. If County had allowed or encouraged annexation there would no longer be an issue as the lands, within Town limits, could be developed a la Woodman Grove, using the “development agreement technique”. It was said that Greenwich residents opposed it. Now the County is considering allowing this development on their own. While the Daniels submission points out that the application seems to benefit only a few landowners it fails to point out that other private interests benefit by the status quo. No motives are pure here.

    • Ultimately profitability of farms, housing development, and other commercial ventures will determine how this land is used (or maybe not used) in the long run. It seems to me that these businesses are as much retail as farms… and they have serious competition from both big business and government-sponsored hobby farmers.

      Our leadership and bureaucrats are not competent to run Wolfville. Annexing these farms would be like pouring a vat full of fat onto the fire…