New Great Lakes bill ignores land owner rights: McDonell

New Great Lakes bill ignores land owner rights: McDonell
Jim McDonell

CORNWALL, Ontario – Conservatives are lining up against an environmental protection bill they say will lead to more bureaucracy at Queen’s Park and ignores land owners.

Jim McDonell and other Tories lambasted the governing Liberals this week over Bill 66, the Great Lakes Protection Act, which proponents say will protect drinking water – among other things – but which critics have dismissed as flawed.

“Our caucus raised numerous concerns that we wanted addressed in order to ensure the bill gets the balance right and reflects the concerns of municipalities, property owners and other stakeholders,” said McDonell. “We wanted to work with the government to pass the best bill possible to protect these invaluable resources.

“We are simply against bad public policy that delivers no meaningful or measurable results. Bill 66 is just a photo-op bill.”

The government has indicated the proposed act will, among other things, help fight climate change, protect wetlands and other coastal areas and reduce harmful algal blooms.

Bill 66 recently passed third reading.

McDonell accused the Liberals of putting forward legislation that disrespects property owners y allowing authorities to access private property without a warrant.

“We wanted the opportunity to have province-wide hearings on this legislation to give all Ontarians the chance to have their voices heard,” he said.

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