Potentially ominous news: “I’m not at liberty to disclose them because they’re covered under a confidentiality agreement, but I can say that council, we’re looking at this,” Stratford mayor said

Stratford, Ontario has a track record extending back over a century – a track record for taking into account the wishes of residents, when land use decisions are made.

Stratford now faces a major test: Will the voices of residents be heard?

You can do an online search for this topic, if you wish to get up to speed on an issue that has many Stratford residents startled.

For a start, here are a couple of articles.

A Dec. 8, 2020 CBC article reads: “As angry protests continue over Chinese glass factory, Stratford’s mayor voices his regrets: Dan Mathieson said if he could do it over again, he wouldn’t have asked the province for a MZO.”

An exc erupt reads:

Mathieson formally asked the province for what’s known as a minister’s zoning order, or MZO; three times since 2018. The power allows the minister to issue a decree on a piece of land that can’t be appealed by community groups or Ontario’s Local Planning Appeal Tribunal.

A Dec. 16, 2020 Radio Canada International article reads: National security’ claim added to opposition to Chinese glass plant in Ontario.”

An excerpt reads:

The small central Ontario city of Stratford Ontario, is widely known for its Shakespearean theatre and annual festival. As such there is also a vibrant arts community that has grown there over the decades in the otherwise mostly agricultural region.

However it’s now becoming the site of an international battle.

A multi-national Chinese firm, Xinyi Canada Glass Limited wants to build a huge ‘float glass’ plant on prime agricultural land on the edge of the city. A growing group of residents is greatly upset at how approval has been granted for the Chinese factory. They claim there has been a lack of transparency by town council about the deal, the costs, and a very specific Ontario ministerial rezoning order (MZO) to allow the plant and which overrides public review.

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