Archive for August, 2012

Victoria Beach Cottage Owners Association ELECTIONS Sept 2, 2012

The Victoria Beach Cottage Owners Association (VBCOA) will be holding annual VBCOA elections for the positions of President, Vise President, Secretary, and Treasurer during their annual meeting, Sept 2nd, 2pm at the Seniors Scene on Ateah Road.

Interested parties can submit their names to RonPratt@mymts.net   All VB Cottage owners can submit.

VBCOA Meeting September 2nd at 2pm

The annual VICTORIA BEACH COTTAGE OWNERS ASSOCIATION (VBCOA) meeting will be held on Sunday Sept 2nd at 2pm at the Seniors Scene on Ateah Road.

Please be sure to attend as this rejuvinated cottagers owners organization — geared towards maintaining, protecting and insuring that we keep Victoria Beach as we have known it for all these many years — has its annual meeting.  A great forum to discuss concerns, praises and ideas for the present and future of our wonderful Victoria Beach community.

They will also be holding annual VBCOA elections for the positions of President, Vise President, Secretary, Treasurer. Interested parties can submit their names to RonPratt@mymts.net   All VB Cottage owners can submit.

Everyone is welcome!

REMINDER: Council Meeting August 21st, VB Sports Centre 7pm

A reminder to please attend the Council Meeting on Tuesday August 21st at 7pm at the Sports Centre.

Likely to be discussed is the perceived lack of enforcement on the important new by-law 1539, the proposed new VB Development Plan, the state of the court case regarding the revetment on Patricia/Arthur, thoughts on how we don’t want the rest of VB to become like Pelican Point, that the school tax issue must be addressed more aggressively and much more.

For more info click on the topic you want:  Pelican Point    Halted Shoreline Work     By-law 1539    Baird Shoreline Report    RMVB Development Plan

Council meetings have a lot more weight and importance to them now a days and if you want your voice heard or want to get the latest information it is vital to attend this summer council meeting.

Please mark it on your calendar and tell your VB neighbours.  See you there!

PELICAN POINT: A Sad View of the Future?

Do you remember decades back (or even just a few years back) of the wonderful untouched natural sand and marshes on Pelican Point? How there were amazing strips of beach and sand bars all around the point? A truly beautiful and unspoiled spot.

Have you taken a walk or a bike ride there lately?

If not you may be very surprised at what it looks like now.

Where is all the sand? Where has all the beach area gone to? Where are the sandbars? Where does the public go to sit or swim!? What has happened to all the wildlife and flora that used to be abundant there?

Here are some pictures of what we have negligently and carelessly allowed (as a community) Pelican Point to turn into.  A result by not taking a firm stance, by letting those in power give permission and not letting them know we do not want this to be happening to our precious shorelines. That these type of structures must be stopped from spreading elsewhere on our public beaches.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It is absolutely depressing to visit Pelican Point now. It is no longer a place for all of the public to enjoy and experience. Instead it has become a place for a privileged few to enjoy a quiet waterfront view.

And, good luck in seeing any Pelicans. Not a one on our numerous visits.

Make no mistake; if we do not definitively demand a stop to revetment building from happening along our shorelines — IMMEDIATELY AND FOR ALWAYS — you can expect Clubhouse, Patricia/Arthur, Alex/King and Connaught to eventually be the same experience for the general public in but a short decade.

No beaches. Nothing for the public to access. A place for a select few to enjoy a view while the rest of us jump off the pier to cool off.

It really is important to take the time to see Pelican Point today. To see a defining example of the future of our precious shorelines if we do not act decisively to halt any more of this type of building on Victoria Beach shores. (This beautiful area was once very much like the beautiful beaches we enjoy in the restricted area today.)

It is time to stand up. To be heard. Let your council know your thoughts. Don’t let others do all the talking for you. Don’t assume the vocal few can stop this for you. Power is in numbers!

Be at the Council Meeting on August 21st at the Sports Club. If you can’t be there, send them an email with your concerns.

Here is a list of their email addresses: https://preservingvictoriabeach.wordpress.com/2011/02/19/victoria-beach-council-members/

Time is running out. We need to save these beaches. NOW!

Pelican Point is a deafening, defining and “right in your face” example of why.

Go take a look at the future of Victoria Beach. Let your eyes be your proof.  Go see Pelican Point at your earliest convenience.

The future vision of Victoria Beach shorelines has never been more clear.

And it is, in a word, alarming.

PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU PASS THIS WEBSITE ON TO ALL FELLOW VB LOVERS SO THEY KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING AND CAN STAY PROPERLY INFORMED.

IS ANYONE LEARNING ANYTHING? Part One

Have you seen or are you even aware of the now halted work on Connaught point in front of 411 Sunset from this spring? Here are some pictures:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It is very sad and frustrating to see that the learning curve towards how we need to treat our precious public sand shorelines and how we react to their human imposed destruction or misuse — particularly after the human lead assault on Arthur/Patricia last summer — seems to be progressing at a snails pace.

It seems that a summer with a lower water level, along with the glorious weather, has lulled our community back into a sense of complacency. (Playing right into the hands of those who have different designs on how to use, preserve and respect the public beaches and shorelines at Victoria Beach and the surrounding area. And, who are actively campaigning for it behind the scenes.)

A very dangerous thing indeed.

A very disturbing development over the spring is the now halted construction found on Connaught/King Edward point, from this spring.

A simple visual inspection seems to show how the section of the bank has been carved/removed, trees have been mechanically cut and there has been an insertion of holes and two concrete pads. (The work was ordered halted only once all of this destruction had already been initiated.)

The big question is how did this construction ever get this far before either council or the police realized it and it was halted? As well, how could this type of endeavour have even been contemplated by the people responsible after the reaction last year by the public to unauthorized work on a public beach?

Most importantly, what exactly is council and the RMVB doing about having it immediately removed and restored to its original state?

Have we not learned anything over the last year?

It seems the time has come for the RMVB to show some teeth and enforce its by-laws more effectively when unauthorized work or actions are done. Should this area not be returned swiftly to pre conditions if all necessary permits and paperwork were not completed or authorized or all necessary procedures were not followed to the letter of the law?

After talking with council, it is understood that according to by-law 1411 in order for the work to have been allowed to begin on King Edward/Connaught, a Shoreline Protection Permit would have been needed. Which includes the following:

1. Contractor or engineer drawings. (method, spacial extent, crest, elevation, tone detail, stone size etc)

2. Application sent to SETC. (Shoreline Erosion Technical Committee) (who evaluates the proposal and makes recommendations and changes)

3. The SETC sends its comments to the RMVB and proponents, the councillors evaluate the comments and rule based on the Shoreline Protection Plan.

4. Construction begins.

Council can confirm that all of these necessary materials and guidelines were not yet submitted nor followed prior to the work being started.

The big question is why then has the area not been restored to its original state? What is being done and what deadlines are being imposed for resolution? Why the wait?

Presumably, this cannot be allowed to drag along unresolved like the situation on Arthur that now seems destined to be buried in the slow court system for who knows how long.

Perhaps more questions that Council needs to be asked on August 21st?

Please read a second post for Part Two of:  IS ANYONE LEARNING ANYTHING?

IS ANYONE LEARNING ANYTHING? Part Two

Unfortunately, the troubles along the shoreline does not stop with one example.

If you are to take a leisurely walk down the beaches on any given day you will incredibly still see various watercraft sitting or stored along the banks. You will see various private landowners stairs or structures or chairs placed atop the banks to help them easily access or view the beach. (instead of using the public stairs built just for that purpose) Or just as disrespectful: particular lakefront cottagers continuing to climb down the rocks and cliffs to access the beach directly in view of signs saying keep off the banks! Seemingly in blatant defiance of the new by-law 1539 and our renewed community desire to better protect the rate of erosion on cliffs/banks.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

One has to wonder: Is anyone doing anything to stop this? Is anyone meaningfully enforcing the by-laws in any way other than that of a “blurb” in The Herald on the Council news page? Perhaps a great question to have posed for the council meeting on August 21st? How many fines or warnings have been recorded and given out so far this summer? As these pictures show, there certainly seem to be a lot of offenders. (It also seems appropriate to note — and to question — how is it that the greatest number of offenders we found on our photo shoot seem to be on Connaught in direct daily view of one of our elected VB councillors??!)

(For By-law 1539 click here.)

There is no denying that our Council deserves credit for their evolution over the last year. They seem to have made great progress in their realization and understanding that the shorelines of our beautiful area are in trouble from human actions and that there must be immediate, proactive and concerted efforts to protect the public beaches at all costs. (The Baird report on our shorelines was outstanding and a defining presentation as to what and what not to do.)  https://preservingvictoriabeach.wordpress.com/2012/07/24/a-critical-report-on-the-rmvb-shoreline-concludes-revetments-doomed-to-fail-and-doomed-to-destroy-the-beaches/

What seems to be missing at this moment of time is a serious follow through with swift, determined and decisive actions when cottagers do not follow the rules. Particularly disconcerting is having it happen ongoing in direct view of our own lakefront councillor.

So, it is time to ask: Has anyone learned anything over the last year?

Knowing the right thing to do is one thing. Doing it and enforcing it is another. It is time for all of our council, the Province and the RMVB authorities to stand taller and protect the public shorelines like never before.

It appears the time has come to let them know if you are happy with the enforcement and follow through so far.

Time is clearly of the essence if we are to continue the progress and momentum created last year to protect and preserve the public sand beaches on Lake Winnipeg.

We must not lose the ground we gained last year to protecting these one of a kind beaches and shorelines we are blessed and privileged to enjoy.

Be active. Be vocal. Make the effort.

Be heard!  Tell your council what you think.

The battle has not yet been won.

Tag Cloud