SDWDC appeal withdrawn, sign to be removed

South Dundas Waterfront Development Corporate home at 11141 County Road 2 east of Iroquois in summer 2020. (File photo)

IROQUOIS – Issues regarding an ongoing property rezoning and a controversial LED sign are winding down.

In April 2021, South Dundas council defeated a rezoning application by the South Dundas Waterfront Development Corporation to rezone a residential property to highway commercial.

The company wanted to turn a modular home constructed in 2020 at 11141 County Road 2, just east of Doran Creek, into a model home and showroom for its development company.

The SDWDC filed an appeal with the Ontario Land Tribunal. That appeal was withdrawn by the SDWDC and its named director Patricia Theriault on January 11, just before the trial date.
Prior to the rezoning application, the SDWDC installed a large LED billboard sign on the property to advertise its development plans.

When the sign was installed in 2020, the company had a permit from SDG Counties, but there was no building permit from South Dundas issued. This highlighted problems in the permitting process between upper and lower-tier municipalities which have now been corrected through bylaw revisions.

The billboard was the subject of bylaw complaints over the past 18 months relating to the intensity of the light from the sign, light pollution at night, and the hours the sign was in operation. This prompted further reforms to the sign bylaw at SDG Counties and the threat of legal action by the SDWDC.

In withdrawing its OLT rezoning appeal, the SDWDC has also agreed to remove the freestanding LED sign by June 7, 2022.

“The Municipality heard the concerns from our residents and has worked diligently to resolve the issue. We are glad to be able to put this matter to rest,” said South Dundas Mayor Steven Byvelds. “We are pleased with the agreement that will see the sign removed this year.”

This is the latest legal issue for the SDWDC. According to the Ottawa Police Service, the SDWDC is operated by Edouard Bonamie.

In December 2021, Bonamie (73) was arrested by OPS who then laid eight charges relating to a major investigation involving yacht fraud. Police say that Bonamie also goes by the alias Nicholas Bonamy.

Bonamie remains in jail following his arrest. Details of his bail proceedings are subject to a Section 517 publication ban under the Criminal Code. Bonamie appeared in the Ontario Court of Justice in Ottawa January 14. His next court appearance is January 21.

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