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CWS Refuses to Answer Outstanding Questions
 
In  December 2002,   we asked CWS questions about the EASG process, Open House #4, Public Consultation on Doc. #4, and Doc. #5. They replied  in early February, 2003, but failed to answer several important questions.
So we asked them to answer the rest of our questions.  They said no. We recently asked again. And again, CWS  has refused to answer our questions. 

WWLC's Outstanding Questions to CWS

 M E M O R A N D U M              

IER : Planning, Research and Management Services

7501 Keele Street, Suite 300,
Concord, Ontario, Canada  L4K 1Y2
Telephone:  (905) 660-1060 
Fax:  (905) 660-7812  E-mail: ier@dpra.com

To:                  Rhonda Hustler, WWLC

From:              Peter Homenuck, IER

cc:                   Paul Murray, GLL

                        Kevin Bechard, CWS

                       Phil Bosco, GLL

Date:               June 9, 2003

 Subject:           WWLC Response to Outstanding Questions (Our P666)___________________________________________________________________                                                                                                                                                                 You indicated in your e-mail messages of May 26 and June 4, 2003 that you are expecting responses to a WWLC document entitled Outstanding questions and concerns from previous correspondence (February 25, 2003).

 In a previous memo dated February 6, 2003, we indicated to you that questions and comments on previous responses that had been sent to you would not be given further responses.  I believe that your list of  outstanding questions and concerns are repetitive of questions previously responded to.  Thus, no further responses will be provided.

 

 
Issue #1: Public Consultation
A critical part of the Environmental Assessment is the public consultation process, the events and opportunities by which we, the commmunity, can review and comment on the proposed expansion plan. The process is a requirement under the EA Act. The consultation conducted by the proponent (CWS)  must be meaningful and reasonable.
The consultation process is controlled by CWS, but we have both the right and the responsibility to participate fully, making useful contributions throughout the process. In many ways, the product is only as good as the process, and we're committed to making the public consultation process effective, equitable, and useful.

What CWS Promised Warwick Watford      At the beginning of the EA process, September 2000, CWS developed and committed to a process for public consultation, including the EASG meetings, the number of Open Houses, newsletters, the release and timing of documents, the review steps, and local meetings. CWS's plan was finalized and released in Document #1, pp. 10-11.

What We're Getting   In our view, CWS has not been meeting those commitments  set out in Document #1. Following are the highlights and then our complete review from October 2002, of CWS's public consultation process .

WWLC Review of Public Consultation: Memo to CWS September 30, 2002.

Issue Highlights

 Discussion Paper #3 Final Changes     We objected strongly when CWS ended discussion of Doc. #3 before we had completed our review at the EASG meetings. CWS took the position that the document was finalized with adequate time for our comments.You'll remember that CWS refused to answer questions or discuss Doc. #3 with the public present at the last  Open House.

Changes in the Public Consultation Process      After finalizing Document #1, Public Consultation, in 2001, CWS changed the EASG process, removing the opportunity for us to respond to CWS comments in the draft documents. CWS said  that the changes had been "developed through discussions among the Township of Warwick, the PRT, and CWS."    Warwick Council's Lawyer Peter Pickfield, however, disagreed, saying the Council and PRT knew nothing about the changes and played no role whatsoever in cahnging the EASG process. Under pressure from the EASG, CWS later withdrew the changes.

 Accelerated Timelines with Overlapping Discussion Papers   Although CWS promised to release only one document at a time and review each document separately, they continually overlap them.  In December 2002, we had Documents #4, #5, and #6   underway  at the same time. Overlapping the documents creates confusion and contradict CWS's own promise on public consultation.

Incomplete Discussion Papers    Documents  #2, #3, and #4, didn't have  important information on methodology, in particular how the results of the public workshop had been used in Doc. #3 . CWS has still not provided the methodology for Doc. #3 as promised,  and without it we don't know how CWS  incorporated community interests and values.