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GRCA cracks down on illegal fill act; owner is ordered to restore property

CAMBRIDGE - The owner of a Woolwich Township property close to Wellington County has been ordered to restore land where he illegally dumped fill in the spring of 2010.

Silviu Buta, of Kitchener, was ordered to remove the fill, regrade and re-vegetate property he owns at 2721 Shantz Station Road west of Maryhill.

Buta pleaded guilty in provincial offences court to one count of undertaking development on the property without obtaining a development permit from the Grand River Conservation Authority.

In addition to restoring the property, Buta must also pay a fine of $1,000.

The fill was placed in a wetland on the Shantz Station Road property.

Under the Conservation Authorities Act, the GRCA has the authority to regulate development activity within and up to 120 metres from a wetland. The purpose of the regulation is to protect the flow of water into, from, and near the wetland.

The GRCA stated in a press release it had received complaints in May and June last year that fill was being placed on the property.

Its staff met the owner, provided information about the regulation, and asked him several times to stop.

The rehabilitation order issued by Justice of the Peace Zeljana Radulovic and it  requires Buta to remove up to 20 full dump truck loads of fill and then restore the property within 10 days of that fill removal.

The GRCA and other Conservation Authorities in Ontario administer regulations that control development near wetlands, along watercourses and their flood plains, steep slopes, and the Lake Erie shoreline.

Regulated areas make up about one-third of the Grand River watershed.

In recent years, the GRCA has hired two enforcement officers to investigate complaints. Most cases are resolved through negotiation with landowners without court action.

Landowners planning to undertake a project near a wetland, stream, river, or other regulated area should contact a resource planner at the GRCA. Email addresses and phone numbers are available in the Planning and Regulations section of the GRCA website at www.grandriver.ca.

They can also use Map My Property – an interactive mapping tool on the GRCA website to see if any parts of their property are regulated.

 

August 5, 2011

 
 

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