Peat moss business wins appeal over town

Author(s): Al Burton

December 17, 2015

Is it a peat moss extraction/triple mix business or a waste disposal/transfer site?

For two years, the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville and resident Paul Bolender have been having this argument in court.

Bolender contends his business on Hwy. 48, just north of Vandorf Road – Bolender Excavating and Garden Supplies – is a peat moss extraction/triple mix site. The town believes it is an illegal waste disposal/transfer site.

Bolender, 89, was somewhat victorious recently when the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled the initial lower court judgement, which was in favour of the town, was wrong and ordered the matter to trial.

The municipality also had to pay Bolender $20,000 for legal fees. However, because Bolender had money owing to the town, he received only a portion of the settlement, according to Marc Pourvahidi, CAO for the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville.

“It certainly and should be considered a success. I don’t want to say it’s a victory for the little guy,” Bolender’s lawyer Al Burton of the Toronto law firm Thomson Rogers told The Sun-Tribune.

The original judge ruled the Hwy. 48 business was a waste disposal site and against the municipal zoning bylaw.

However, Bolender’s appeal was successful because the evidence before the lower court judge could have been interpreted either way, according to Burton.

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