Letter to the editor – property flooding issues


Dear Editor,

Thank your David for your article 22 August in which you described my problems with Merrickville Wolford (Village refuses responsibility for flooding lands). I would like to clarify a few things as simply as I can. 0n March 4, 2016 at a meeting between myself as well as Mayor Nash, Dave Powers, Shelly Macpherson, Kim Weedmark and A/CAO Arie Hooganboom, it was agreed that Merrickville Wolford would clean out existing creek bed of Atkinson Creek which had been plugged up when new culverts were installed crossing Armstrong Road. The creek water flowed west to my property along the north side ditch where it had been previously cleaned out to below grade level creating high ground water levels. Shelly Macpherson, Dave Powers, as well as Roger Billings the Back Hoe operator and myself had previously, in December 2015, opened up the place where the creek was plugged, and the water flowed well. Therefore, an agreement was made that Merrickville Wolford would open the existing creek bed for 100 m north of the ditch and taper the ditch back to that point so all water would flow out the creek again.

On August 25, 2016, I sent an e-mail to Dave Powers noting that the ditch had been tapered as per the 2016 agreement. He replied: shovel coming next week to finish. First week of September, I noticed the work had been done about 150 m west of the creek; a ditch went in about 40m, then went west about 100m, to my property line, then about 50m into my property line, where it was just stopped.

I contacted Mayor Nash and explained to him what had happened. He said he had no knowledge and I should contact Dave Powers. September 12, 2018, sent an e-mail to Dave Powers with no reply till after a second e-mail on Sept 16, where he referred me to Arie Hoogenboom. I called Dave Nash and he told me a new CAO was just coming in, and I agreed to wait. In October I called Dave Nash again and he said John Regan would call me and he did. I explained my position and he told me he had discussed it with the Mayor and Dave Powers and said Dave Powers had permission to go on my property. I did not give them permission to go onto my property! A few days later, I went into the office and again talked to John Regan and requested another meeting with council. His reply was: “Not going to happen! We will just lawyer up!” I explained I am ex-military and that my pension is not that great. He laughed in my face and walked away! The Permit issued by RVCA states 100m cleanout of Atkinson on Lot 15. At no time did they clean out any part of Atkinson Creek. Also, my property is Lot 16, not on the permit. I contacted Shelly Macpherson of the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority and she said that GPS showed the work was done in the right place. This was later contradicted by her reply to my request for a copy of the Final Inspection Report, which Arie Hoogenboom claimed had been received. Arie had in fact been out to my property and I showed him everything. In a letter to me he admitted they did not go in at the designated spot, stating it was because of access for the 25 ton shovel, which is not true. Access is no different than where they went in. He denied all responsibility. In my follow up e-mail, requesting to make representation to council, he said they considered it closed, and refused because I had a lawyer. He knew that was not true, and I had the letter there to show him. Mayor Nash has refused to admit knowledge or show leadership as he should. The money expended for this was wasted and it is a cover up.

I expected integrity from Arie Hogenboom, but was I wrong. My wife Lynn was born and raised in Merrickville. We were married here more than 55 years ago and built our home here in 1982 on return from Germany. Our children were raised here and I think it is time for integrity to return to Merrickville-Wolford. Please get out and vote for change.

Thank you,
Bill Wright


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