BV expresses concerns on Algonquin Land Claim parcel

·3 min read

Eganville – Bonnechere Valley has some concerns about a new parcel of land in the township which is part of the proposed lands for transfer to the Algonquins through the Algonquin Land Claim.

“This particular parcel is very problematic,” Mayor Jennifer Murphy said during a committee meeting of council last Tuesday afternoon. “The right-of-way is through somebody’s farm. I’m not sure how we accommodate this on such a weird road.”

The parcel in question is known as 58C and access goes along Gierman Road in the Sebastopol part of Bonnechere Valley. It is a waterfront parcel on Lake Clear and part of the reason for the request for the parcel was as an access point to the islands on Lake Clear which have been included in previous maps as 58B.

Mayor Murphy said she was glad the township had the chance to respond to the proposed lands and the concerns on the new parcel. It was the only new parcel in the township in the updated maps. Because of accessibility concerns the township is objecting to this proposed land transfer.

“I’m grateful with this particular parcel we are able to say ‘no’,” she said.

The land is a small chunk of Crown land. There are several issues for council. The primary issue is there is no access to this piece of land and the only access is through a private road. As well the parcel includes the shore road allowance, and this belongs to the township. It could be leased but that would have to be arranged with the municipality. As well the land is not easily accessible.

“The adjacent property owners have said the topography of the land makes it not easily accessible,” CAO Annette Gilchrist explained as well.

If the land was intended as an access point for the islands, the other previous parcel with 58B does offer a way to access the islands, she said.

Councillor Tim Schison questioned what happens after the transfer of the parcels of land.

“If that is transferred, with the at capacity rules do they apply to those lots?” he asked.

“When they are transferred, they are like any other property owner,” Mrs. Gilchrist told council. “They can be taxed and developed where permitted.”

Th province has asked municipalities and people in the area to have their concerns in by December 10.

“Everyone is trying to be as open and transparent as possible,” she said.

Mayor Murphy said when a presentation was done at Renfrew County council about the land claim, she did express her concerns about the parcel on Constant Lake.

“It is land locked,” she said. “I asked if they knew there would be no emergency services.”

That parcel, 129M, is not accessible for first responders, she said.

Area residents with concerns about the parcels of land in BV can also contact council, she said. Comments can be submitted to the township office, she said.

“In the Lake Clear update there was a blast,” she noted.

Councillor Jack Roesner said he would like to see the comments from ratepayers as well.

The municipality has received several comments from ratepayers on the lands in question.

“Sometimes a person who lives near there has more comments,” Mrs. Gilchrist noted.

All the comments will be sent to council, she said.

“We have done our due diligence and the province is aware of our concerns,” she said.

The township response is being sent to the province. As well individual ratepayers of adjoining properties were contacted by the province for comments. All comments are due by December 10.

The maps can be accessed through an interactive map at www.tanakiwin.com.

Debbi Christinck, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Eganville Leader