It is intended that the Town of Bauline will undertake to sign a Municipal Habitat Stewardship Agreement with the Province’s Department of Environment and Conservation. This Agreement would indicate the Town’s support for the long-term conservation of wetland and associated upland within designated areas known as “Management Units”. The agreement and a subsequently developed Habitat Conservation Plan would provide long-term guidance to the Town in relation to activities impacting wetlands and coastal areas, its associated wildlife and its inherent ecological functions.
At the Public Hearing conducted 7:00 pm, 29 May 2013 regarding the Municipal Stewardship Program as it pertains to the community of Bauline there were three main questions/concerns posed by the residents in attendance as follows:
- A land owner raised a concern regarding a portion of his family’s property within the Bakeapple Marsh Management Unit. The Mayor met with him and his brother the evening of 10 June 2013.
- A resident requested that there be a 200 foot buffer the length of the Bakeapple Marsh adjacent to the road (right hand side of Bauline Line heading towards Main Street Bauline) taken out of the Management Unit for the purpose of future development.
- A resident raised a concern regarding an access road (currently in use by Traverse Gardens) and how it would affect the development of his property. He explained that he is relying on that road as an access route which will need to be upgraded in the future.
In addition at the 29 May 2013 Municipal Habitat Stewardship hearing, some in attendance requested that a final draft of the proposed map be available for review by the public prior to being officially sent to the Department of Environment and Conservation.
Several e-mails and a meeting with Charmaine Barney, a Stewardship Biologist with the Department of Environment and Conservation’s Wildlife Division, has concluded with the following amendments adopted by council:
- A 200 foot buffer for a portion of the Bakeapple Marsh will be removed from the Bakeapple Marsh Management Unit. The remainder will be unchanged due to the ecological function of that particular Management Unit.
- The access road (currently in use by Traverse Gardens) will remain in the Management Unit. Details regarding upgrading of the route will be incorporated into a subsequent Habitat Conservation Plan. This plan will be a guide as to how the Town would manage these areas. With regards to the access road upgrade, it will ensure that the construction will not affect the ecological functions of the wetland or alter the existing hydrology of the wetland by means of extensive infilling and fragmentation beyond the bounds of the road. As well adding new roads will not be permitted.
The fact that the areas above have been removed from the Wetland Management Unit does not necessarily imply that development is authorized. These areas are still in an Open Space Conservation (OSC) zone and would require review of council prior to any re-zoning and development.
This concludes the public consultation portion of the Municipal Stewardship Program initiative. The Town Council of Bauline will now work with the Provincial Department of Environment and Conservation to create the Habitat Conservation Plan and sign a Municipal Habitat Stewardship Agreement. The Council of Bauline wishes to thank all residents for their input in this worthwhile environmental initiative.