Monday, May 12, 2008

Town of Milton Pats Itself on the Back

From Friday's Champion:

Town doing 'outstanding job': CAO

While things may not be perfect when it comes to the timing of development and infrastructure in Milton, Town staff says that overall it's doing a good job in managing growth.

...CAO Mario Belvedere told council he feels that generally the Town has done an outstanding job in managing growth.

He acknowledged there might be "hiccups" when it comes to things like the timing of road construction.

"But other than that we've done a pretty darn good job," he said.

Town Director of Planning and Development Mel Iovio shared similar sentiments.

He said the planning, development phasing and financial agreements the Town has struck with developers have generally resulted in a controlled and logical growth pattern.

BTW, that would be this pattern:

But I digress...

Town Director of Engineering Services Paul Cripps pointed out that some roads projects are being fast-tracked through the Accelerated Transportation Capital Program, such as the widening of Derry Road from Tremaine Road to Bronte Street.

The `Accelerated Transportation Capital Program` was brought in after the Town clued into the fact that the development fees they were charging wouldn`t be enough to cover the required arterial road improvements to service the new developments, and that the fees they would be receiving wouldn`t reach the Town`s coffers until long after the work needed to be done. So they worked out a deal where Mattamy and other developers would supply the capital needed to fast-track the road improvements, and the Town would pay them back without interest at a future date.

In other words, our town is currently tens of millions of dollars in debt to the very same housing developers who are asking them to approve still more housing developments.

I`m no expert, but that seems to me to be the very definition of a conflict of interest. But hey, kudos to the Town of Milton for doing such an exceptional job of letting the developers do their job for them.

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