A second statuatory meeting under the Planning Act for the property at 410 Clair Road E. will be held in Council Chambers, City Hall, beginning at 7 pm. on Monday, March 1, 2010.
No decisions will be made at this meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to receive input from the community and to ask questions of staff and indicate information needed prior to city planning staff writing their report.
There has been a lot of media and blogging attention focused on this application. I have been contacted by residents close to the proposed site, as well as members of the Sikh community, to offer their input and pose questions. For the most part, the dialogue from all sides has been respectful. Unlike the anonymous blogosphere, I have received very little communication that appears racially motivated.
I have been asked by many constituents where I stand on the issue. My answer is consistent. Once all of the planning questions have been asked and answered, and once the public consultation phase of the application has concluded, staff will write a report and give their professional opinion on the planning merits (or lack thereof) of the application. It would not be appropriate for a councillor to come to a conclusion about support or opposition until this process is complete. But one thing I can say — my decision will be made solely on the arguments based on the principles of our Official Plan and related planning documents. It does not matter to me what religious group is making the application. The planning principles embedded in our city’s planning policies are equally applied to religious establishments of all faiths.