The City of Hamilton announced its hired Gowling WLG to file for an injunction at the Superior Court to stop soil dumping at 1802 Regional Road 97 in Flamborough.

For background on the soil dumping, you should read TheSpec, which has been covering the story in-depth. [I intentionally do not summarize key materials that other journalists spend time collecting, they deserve the web traffic.]

A couple of notes on this development.

1) Hiring Gowling is a smart move by the City.

Internal city lawyers do not have the expertise and work load capacity. The owner of the property sounds like he is going to argue the soil is part of his Normal Farming Practice.

Both site alternation and Normal Farming Practices are niche areas of expertise.

Related reading on Site Alternation, the Burlington Air Park saga.

2) The City’s Director of Bylaw is diligent.

Director, Licensing & By-law Enforcement Monica Ciriello and her managers will have collected all the necessary documentation, issued the necessary and appropriate notices and fines, and have all their work in order for the Superior Court to consider.

3) Hamilton’s recent updates to its Site Alteration and Normal Farming Practices policies will help.

The creation of the new Agricultural Site Alteration Application Review Working Group which interprets what constitutes “Normal Farm Practice” shows the City provides clear pathways for legal site alternation for farming purposes.

4) Injunction motions are judged against a three-part test. I explained this test in the context of encampments.