Benny Marotta has confirmed SORE’s worst fears.
Over the last week Marotta has supervised the virtual clear-cutting of one of the four Rand Estate properties, after misleadingly advising the Town he had a permit to do so from the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA). In spite of demonstrations and pleas from residents and our incoming Council for him to stop. This is apparently how Mr. Marotta intends to “make NOTL more beautiful”.
More shocking still, SORE now has clear drone surveillance evidence that portions of the nationally significant Dunington-Grubb designed landscape on 200 John St have been illegally eradicated by Marotta’s crews since it was designated as a heritage resource by the outgoing NOTL Council.
Marotta’s actions were, regrettably, entirely predictable. See the Benny Marotta media archive on the SORE website to understand who and what we are dealing with.
SORE expects the Town and our incoming Council, together with the Region and the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, to step up and force Marotta to stop his ongoing destruction of what remains of the Rand Estate. The Town voted earlier this year to accord heritage protection to the entire Rand Estate. This protection is meaningless if the Town isn’t closely controlling anything and everything that now happens at Randwood. The fact that Marotta has been able to destroy a significant heritage asset under the nose of the Town is shocking.
SORE calls on Town staff to immediately initiate a prosecution of Benny Marotta and Two Sisters for illegal destruction of the protected Dunington-Grubb landscape on 200 John. If the Town does not do so, SORE will engage lawyers to initiate a private prosecution and seek a restoration order under the Heritage Act. SORE further demands that the Town require a heritage permit application before ANY additional work of any sort at the Rand Estate.
SORE also calls on the NPCA to just do its job. One would have thought the election results and the recent Auditor-General’s report on the NPCA might have made NPCA management uncomfortable turning a blind eye to enforcing their mandate. So far this is not the case. We demand better. See the attached letter sent on Friday to the NPCA by SORE’s lawyer.
Mr. Marotta seems to want to remind us he’s not going away. Neither are we. Mr. Marotta your day is coming.
SORE lawyer letter to NCPA Nov 9 2018