Richard Bell
The Eastern Shore Cooperator
October 15, 2020

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Opponents of the secret sale last year of Owls Head Provincial Park by the Department of Lands and Forestry took advantage of the upcoming election to ask every candidate for HRM Council, “If the matter is before Council, would you support upholding the Regional Park designation, in order to protect Owls Head Provincial Park Reserve?”

The question refers to the current RPK (Regional Park) zoning,  which HRM Council would have to change before Lighthouse Links, owned by billionaire Gilbert Beckwith, could build three golf courses on the site. The section of the zoning code on “Recreation Use” mentions a number of activities that would be permitted, but concludes that the category “does not include commercial recreation uses.”

… In District 2, all three challengers opposed changing the zoning (David Boyd, Nicole Johnson, and Tim Milligan). Incumbent Councillor David Hendsbee adopted the same position he took during the controversy over the C&D dump in Porters Lake, that because the issue might come before him to vote on, he had to reserve judgement and not take a position in order to avoid accusations of bias. In the C&D dump case, Hendsbee (and the Council overall) voted against allowing the dump, only to have the Utility and Review Board overturn the vote, opening the way for the dump.

Elsewhere in HRM, almost every challenger who replied opposed changing the zoning, as well as a number of other incumbents. 

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