MICHAEL GORMAN: Judge reserves decision in Owls Head matter

Michael Gorman
CBC News
April 1, 2021

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Owls Head might never have been a provincial park, but the fact so many Nova Scotians believed it was — and, indeed, even government officials — should have made public consultation a requirement before the province considered selling it, Nova Scotia Supreme Court heard Thursday.

… “The heart of this issue is really the secret removal of a park’s [pending] protected status,” Simpson told the court.

He provided a variety of examples that showed members of the public and provincial government officials believed for decades that Owls Head was a provincial park. Only recently was it learned the land did not carry that designation.

As such, Simpson argued the public was owed a duty of fairness and the chance to comment before members of the treasury and policy board made the decision to delist the property and potentially sell the Crown land at the recommendation of Iain Rankin, who was lands and forestry minister at the time.

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Information Morning: Michael Gorman & the Judicial review into the Province’s decision to remove Owl’s Head from a protected areas list

“He [Premier Rankin] has argued that he sees a way for golf courses and environmental protection to work hand in hand. That’s a bit tricky in this case. For anybody who is familiar with this land and has been out to see it, it’s hard to imagine a golf development without the land being basically carpet-bombed to make it appropriate for that type of a development.”

Continue reading “Information Morning: Michael Gorman & the Judicial review into the Province’s decision to remove Owl’s Head from a protected areas list”

Documents give details about controversial golf development in coastal N.S.

Record filed in N.S. Supreme Court by province includes value of Owls Head provincial park

Michael Gorman
CBC News
November 3, 2020

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The parcel of rocky, rugged Crown land in Little Harbour is worth $216,000, according to the valuation report commissioned by Lighthouse Links and filed with the court. Although that report was previously made public, the value of the land had been redacted.

Jamie Simpson, the lawyer for the parties suing over the decision to delist the property, noted the value is based on what the report determined to be the “highest and best use” for the land: conservation and recreational purposes.

Continue reading “Documents give details about controversial golf development in coastal N.S.”

Opponents to Owls Head golf proposal will seek judicial review

Company wants to build up to 3 golf courses, a housing development and more

Michael Gorman
CBC News
August 18, 2020

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Armed with a favourable court ruling, a retired biologist and environmental group will seek a judicial review of the Nova Scotia government’s decision to remove 285 hectares of Crown land from the pending protected status list.

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N.S. Supreme Court Grants Environmentalists More Time to Appeal Cabinet Decision

Battle is over Owls Head, a 285-hectare piece of Crown land on Nova Scotia’s Eastern Shore

Blair Rhodes
CBC News
August 5, 2020

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In a decision released Wednesday, Nova Scotia Supreme Court Justice Kevin Coady granted Bancroft and the forest watch association more time to file their request for a judicial review.

“The Applicants have a reasonable excuse for the delay,” Justice Coady wrote.

Coady added that the applicants “will suffer prejudice if the extension is not granted” but the respondent “will suffer little prejudice” if it is.

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Supreme Court mulls whether to review controversial Owls Head decision

Taryn Grant 
CBC News
Jun 29, 2020 6:52 PM AT 

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Before the province’s lawyer, Jack Townsend, delivered his arguments to the court, Coady asked him why an extension should be fought, if the review was worthwhile.

“Don’t you think it’s always best to decide issues such as this on the merits, rather than on the procedural obstacles that can pop up because of people dragging their feet or inadvertence or complacency or something of that nature?” Coady said.

Province says a review ‘would be a waste of time’

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MICHAEL GORMAN: Report says best use of Owls Head land would be recreation, conservation

Aerial View of Owls Head - Vision Air

Michael Gorman 
CBC News 
Posted: May 15, 2020 2:49 PM

Developer wants to buy Crown land from the province to build up to 3 golf courses

A valuation report prepared for the company that wants to buy hundreds of hectares of Crown land in Little Harbour, N.S., to build up to three golf courses and other developments says the “highest and best use” for the land is “recreational or conservation purposes.”

Continue reading “MICHAEL GORMAN: Report says best use of Owls Head land would be recreation, conservation”

Michael Gorman Interview Residents in Favour of the Golf Course and Gary Burrill

Rock Crevice by Caitlin Porter
Owls Head golf proposal could bring much needed economic development, supporters claim.

CBC’s Michael Gorman interviews Margaret Stevens, Seldon Keating, and Ronnie McKay, local residents that live near the proposed golf course development at Owls Head Park. Then, Michael Gorman hears from NDP Leader Gary Burrill about the Owls Head Act. We have transcribed some of the questions and answers below. You can listen to the whole interview here.

March 3, 2020
CBC Radio
Information Morning

Continue reading “Michael Gorman Interview Residents in Favour of the Golf Course and Gary Burrill”