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P.E.I. minister has harsh words for city mayor, council over homeless shelter vote

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Delays over a allow that may enable the provincial authorities to construct buildings for Charlottetown’s homeless inhabitants on metropolis property are inflicting division between the 2 ranges of presidency.

On Oct. 11, Charlottetown council voted 6-4 at its month-to-month assembly to defer a variance request in order that two modular house complexes could possibly be arrange adjoining to the previous authorities storage on Park Road.

The following day, P.E.I. Social Growth and Housing Minister Matthew MacKay had harsh phrases metropolis councillors making the choice.

“I’ll be sincere, after we noticed the place the votes went (Oct. 11), I’ve misplaced all religion within the mayor and metropolis council utterly,” MacKay stated. “I can’t consider a phrase that comes out of the mayor’s mouth. He’s backwards and forwards. He’ll say one factor to me, one factor to the premier and one factor to his council. This could by no means have gotten turned down.”

Particular assembly

Late within the afternoon on Oct. 12, town all of the sudden introduced a particular assembly of council on Oct. 13 at 4:30 p.m.

There are two gadgets on the agenda: one to rescind the Oct. 11 decision that deferred the province’s request for a allow and the opposite one to approve the province’s request for a allow.

One other vote to defer on the Oct. 13 assembly would ship the problem again to the planning board, which met on Oct. 3 and advisable that council approve the province’s allow request.

P.E.I. Social Development and Housing Minister Matt MacKay said Sept. 13 the province has purchased modular complexes to house the homeless who have been living in the tent encampments around Charlottetown. - Dave Stewart/SaltWire Network File Photo
P.E.I. Social Growth and Housing Minister Matt MacKay stated Sept. 13 the province has bought modular complexes to deal with the homeless who’ve been residing within the tent encampments round Charlottetown. – Dave Stewart/SaltWire Community File Picture

At problem is a proposed shelter that can have about 52 beds for individuals who have been residing within the tent encampments all through Charlottetown.

MacKay stated his division has been engaged on getting an in a single day emergency homeless shelter in place for the previous three months, including that Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown and Coun. Terry MacLeod have been a part of conferences that have been held throughout that point. The minister added each have been totally conscious of what the plan was.

MacKay stated the modular models are set to reach on Oct. 15. The models will then should be linked to metropolis water and sewer companies and be hooked as much as the facility grid.

“We don’t have time to attend; we don’t have time for town to play video games; we’d like the approval,” the minister stated. “I can’t inform you how dissatisfied I’m. It’s one factor to play politics however to play politics with human lives … I can’t get my head round that.”

Close by residents

At council’s assembly on Oct. 11, Coun. Mitchell Tweel was the primary to recommend deferring the province’s request, saying residents on Park and Seashore streets, close to the proposed shelter, haven’t had time to digest the plan as many residents didn’t have entry to energy as a result of post-tropical storm Fiona.

MacLeod, who represents the world and voted to defer, stated authorities must do greater than inform residents the modular complexes shall be fenced in for safety. The fencing stipulation was a part of the decision council selected to defer on the Oct. 11 assembly.

“This isn’t about Ward 2 saying, ‘we don’t need it,'” MacLeod stated, referring to his residents. “If you are going to do it, you’ve received to do it proper. The province wants to reply. (Space) residents want some assurance that they will be secure. This isn’t about what is occurring contained in the fence. That is about what is occurring exterior the fence.”

The vote

Following is how council voted on a decision to defer the province’s variance request in order that an emergency homeless shelter may function subsequent to the previous authorities storage on Park Road:

  • In favour: Councillors Mitchell Tweel, Terry MacLeod, Jason Coady, Kevin Ramsay, Mike Duffy, Bob Doiron.
  • Opposed: Councillors Alanna Jankov, Greg Rivard, Terry Bernard, Julie McCabe.

Donna Waddell, interim chief administrative officer, stated council’s resolution doubtless means the province will enchantment the choice to the Island Regulatory and Appeals Fee (IRAC). All that would change if council has a sudden change of coronary heart on Oct. 13.

Group enchantment

MacKay stated his division is inspecting all its choices.

“We’ve received a authorized crew engaged on this proper now to see what choices we would have, if any,” MacKay stated. “Within the brief time period, I’m interesting to everybody throughout P.E.I. If there are church organizations, neighborhood halls that we are able to associate with within the brief time period till town will get their points found out and we are able to get the homeless inhabitants off the road.”

MacKay accused the six councillors who voted in favour of the deferral of making an attempt to guard their election probabilities. Voters head to the polls on Nov. 7.

“They selected to take care of themselves for political causes … which is unacceptable. I hope each door they knock on with each particular person within the metropolis seems at them and asks themselves, ‘Is that this who I need to lead our metropolis?'”

Following the vote to defer, MacKay stated he acquired calls from two metropolis councillors however hasn’t spoken to Brown.

“I haven’t talked to the mayor and, in truth, I’ve received no real interest in speaking to the mayor. We had a plan in place; all the pieces regarded good; we did what (town) requested and (Brown) managed the assembly and allowed this to occur.”

Dave Stewart is a reporter with the SaltWire Community in Prince Edward Island. He will be reached by e mail at [email protected] and adopted on Twitter @DveStewart.

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