Editor’s Note: The Coalition for Safe and Healthy Communities for East Preston, Mineville, Lake Echo and Porters Lake led a (thus-far) successful fight to prevent the location of a hazardous waste transfer station on Highway 7 near the Porters Lake-Lake Echo border. They are now asking people for input and direction, starting with the simple question that too few organizations ever ask, whether people support the continuation of the organization at all.
We were impressed by the effectiveness of this group’s steering committee in navigating the complexities they faced at the outset, and in coming up with a winning strategy. We urge readers of the Cooperator to support the continuation of the Coalition.
The Coalition for Safe and Healthy Communities for East Preston, Mineville, Lake Echo and Porters Lake would like your input. But first, a quick update on the status of HRM application 19800 for rezoning a section of Highway 7 for the purpose of establishing a construction and waste processing facility. At this time the application is still on hold but we regularly check in with HRM for updates.
As you recall, this Coalition formed to stand against this application on behalf of the four communities. We sought the endorsement of the residents through a public community meeting, and received their endorsement in July of 2015. Yes, it has been that long ago!
We have worked with three levels of government, sought the advice and participation of experts, and researched, investigated and advocated to support our efforts to stop application 19800. The municipal planners have concluded their report recommending that the request for zoning be denied. The HRM Community Council has stated to the media that it would not support a “yes” vote. At this point, the applicant put the application on hold. The Coalition remains vigilant regarding issues that negatively impact our communities.
In addition, we have had numerous interactions with the provincial Department of Environment requesting changes to the Environment Act to include more measures addressing these types of facilities in Nova Scotia. They are currently researching and working on possible changes. We will periodically check on the status of this work with the Department of Environment.
So now we have to consider, as a Coalition, what next? We look to you, the residents, to provide input by answering the following questions:
1. Do you want to see the Coalition remain as an organization, continuing to work on the behalf of the four communities?
2. Would you support us? The Coalition is a registered society with legally required registration costs; therefore fundraising would be required.
3. What does a "safe and healthy community" mean to you?
4. What does it look like?
5. How do you feel about working together? Not just in or with your own community, but with all four as one?
Your answers are important to us! You can respond on our Facebook page, or by sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org .
We look forward to hearing from you,
The Concerned Residents of Porters Lake, Lake Echo, East Preston & Mineville Areas
Facebook: Concerned Residents of Porters Lake, Lake Echo, East Preston & Mineville Areas