Marsden appeal of a critical council decision is based on technicalities that do have some merit

News 100 blueBy Staff

March 2, 2020



Ann Marsden has filed an appeal against the January 30th council decision to approve amendments and zoning changes to the city Official Plan and the zoning bylaws.

She is one of a reported 31 appeals filed with the City Clerk.

Ann Marsden is not a developer. She has been a candidate for public office on a number of occasions. When she ran for the position of Regional Chair, against Gary Carr who has held that job for a considerable amount of time she garnered 48,136 votes against the 79,775 votes  Carr received.

2018 Halton chair electionresults

The Marsden vote was consistent across the Region.

Someone was listening to Marsden

In her appeal document Marsden said in a covering letter: “The reason for my appeal is that the January 30, 2020 Special Council Meeting was known by the Clerk (Angela Morgan) and the Chief Executive Officer of Burlington (Mayor Meed Ward) to be held outside Section 240 of the Municipal Act and City of Burlington Procedure By-laws:  64-2016 – current when the meeting was called and 04-2020- current when the meeting was held and were the legal framework for calling a Special Council Meeting.

Marsden will argue that the meeting was not properly called and that the Clerk took some short cuts that were just not kosher.  Marsden’s document, like all appeal documents, is detailed, repetitive and at times confusing – but she does have a point – a technical one but nevertheless a point.

Marsden H&S with poppy

Ann Marsden during an election debate.

It revolves around whether or not the public was properly and full aware that there was going to be a Special Meeting of Council and did the members of Council take all the steps necessary to make the calling of the meeting legal.

Marsden has argued that “The Council, therefore, was without jurisdiction to make the decisions they did that lead to 31 appeals being filed before the end of day February 26, 2020.”

“As I understand it an additional 30 appeals to mine were registered by February 26, 2020. Thirty appeals constitute a very large amount of taxpayer, citizen and property owner monies and time being spent before we the taxpayers of Burlington can move on and begin to enjoy our downtown as we should be able to.


Ann and David Marsden – delegating at city council. She does the talking, Dave takes copious note. They have been banned for a period of time from both the Regional Council and Burlington city hall. But they are back.

“Given my appeal deals with there being no jurisdiction for Council to make the decisions on January 30, 2020 that are being appealed I believe in terms of efficiency it would be prudent to hold my appeal first and before the end of March. If I am successful in my appeal the balance of the appeals dealing with the decisions made on January 30, 2020 will be moot as there will be no decisions to appeal and an appropriate order can be made by LPAT in terms of a properly constituted meeting being held to approve the policies that support the Burlington OP. With the benefit of consideration of the points made in the appeals this may well see a better understanding of what can be mutually acceptable policies for developers and citizens that will work in Burlington.

“Further, perhaps progress will have been made in dealing with the John Street MTSA improper designation and moving the boundaries of the Urban Growth Centre to one that better reflects the needs many have addressed at several public meetings and MPP Jane McKenna assured her constituents long ago, can be done.

“I urge you to give immediate attention to my application and the setting of a date so I can submit a factum for the respondent and the tribunal and subpoena witnesses for an oral hearing.”

Transit terminal - John Street

This bus terminal made it possible for the Adi Development Group to get a 24 story tower approved on a site zoned for eight storeys.

The John Street bus terminal got defined as a MTSA – Major Transport Service Area, which made it possible to convince an OMB hearing (Ontario Municipal Board) hearing that the existence of a terminal with an MTSA designation justified the building of a 24 story tower on a site that was zoned for 8 stories.

It is those fine, technical points that result in surprising decisions.

The likelihood of Marsden winning her appeal (it may not even be heard) – slim to none – so don’t bet the mortgage money on it.  But if you’re the type of person who put $3 on a Lottario 649 ticket – why not?

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2 comments to Marsden appeal of a critical council decision is based on technicalities that do have some merit

  • Anne and David Marsden

    Monday a courier delivered a four inch binder of all the OP 119 appeals. Not something we were expecting. It will take time to analyze them something Anne was trained to do through a post graduate course. “Critical Appraisal of Data” a brief review however shows a common theme that to us seems to indicate the ICBL was a waste of time and money. More to cone.

  • If Anne’s appeal is not heard or won then we may as well tear up the Municipal Act and Procedure By-laws and recognize that we live in a dictatorship. Dave Marsden