Six Nations quietly discussing dozens of projects during pandemic

The Six Nations of the Grand River Lands and Resources department has been in talks with various developers throughout the pandemic – with zero community input.

Coun. Wendy Johnson took the department’s Consultation and Accommodation (CAP) team leader, Lonny Bomberry, to task at a political liaison meeting last month after he provided a vague list of projects to council in an attempt to “update” the committee on the projects. But there was no information provided in the update, just a list of proponents and discussions the team is currently engaged in.

Information on these projects is nowhere to be found on the Six Nations Future website – a website created and dedicated solely to providing information to Six Nations community members on engagements with developers on Six Nations treaty territory. The “active engagements” section of the website is blank. It’s not known how Six Nations will be accommodated, or if it will be accommodated, on any of the projects Bomberry brought to the committee last month.

SNGR’s communications team provided the Two Row Times with a list of projects the CAP team brought to the committee, but the communications office has yet to answer specific questions seeking more information on each project.

Calls to Six Nations Lands and Resources Director Lonny Bomberry have not been returned.

In the meantime, the Two Row Times has compiled a list of the projects/discussions with a brief background on each, if available.

The list of projects the CAP team is discussing include:

-City of Brantford update (discussion on how to move forward with developers)

-City of Toronto: update on official plan and discussion on Indigenous heritage within the city

-Discussed with WSP Consultants (an engineering consultant firm with offices in Ontario) on the Lake Erie Industrial Park. According to the Haldimand County website, the Lake Erie Industrial Park is one of the largest industrial parks in Ontario, proposed for the north shore of Lake Erie. The 4,500-acre park is zoned for heavy industrial use. The owner is listed as “private.”

-Town of Lincoln Lakeshore Flood Mitigation measures

-Lake Erie Connector Project: a proposed 1,000 MW high voltage, 117 km underwater transmission line that would deliver power between Ontario and 13 mid-western and mid-Atlantic states in the U.S. Construction is expected to begin this year. It’s not known if Six Nations will benefit from the project in any capacity.

-Greenbelt West Coalition: discussion regarding the proposed expansion of the Greenbelt. The Greenbelt is a large swath of protected land throughout Ontario surrounding a significant portion of the Golden Horseshoe.

-MNDMNRF (Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry); the CAP team says it’s been in discussion with that ministry on “various projects and applications.”

-County of Brant: various consent applications. Six Nations also discussed the wording of the county’s Official Plan document

-City of Cambridge: proposed pedestrian bridge in Hespeler

-Discussions with the IAAC (Impact Assessment Agency of Canada) on the 413 Highway project, also known as the GTA West Project. The 60-kilometer highway would connect Milton from the 401 to Vaughan, ending at Hwy. 400. The project has already sparked protests from environmental groups. The project will clear out 2,000 acres of farmland, cut through 85 waterways, and pave 400 acres of protected land near Vaughan.

-City of Guelph: environmental impacts of proposed pedestrian bridge

-Region of Waterloo: update on Official Plan

-LIV Developments: discussion on Birkett Lane/River Road housing development. The project is a proposed 1,200-unit housing development on greenspace in Eagle Place in Brantford.

-Ontario Place: reviewed their environmental assessment for site servicing

-City of Hamilton: discussed the city’s biodiversity action plan

-Discussed the Chedoke Creek rehabilitation plan. Chedoke Creek is the site of an infamous sewage spill in the City of Hamilton in 2018. Remediation work on the disastrous spill, which also affected an extremely sensitive wetland on the edge of the city called Cootes Paradise, as well as the Western Hamilton Harbour Area, is ongoing.

-Discussions with Brant County on potential locations for an elevated water tank in Paris

-MECP (Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks) discussions regarding changes made to the environmental assessment process

-Metrolinx: discussed project approach and how decisions are made

-Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission: discussed a proposal to bury nuclear waste. The location of this proposed waste burial is not known.

-Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry: discussed the possibility of the ministry creating mechanisms for revenue sharing with Indigenous communities

-City of Kitchener Biehn Drive extension: environmental discussion

-GRCA (Grand River Conservation Authority) quarterly meeting

-Transport Canada: capacity funding discussion

-Broccolini Real Estate Group: meeting to discuss concerns. Broccolini is a Canadian development company.

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