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'Force the premier to keep his promise': Calls to end Bill 23 at rally in Cambridge


Demonstrators in Cambridge are hoping greenbelt and conservation lands can be protected from new home development.

The event at the Dumfries Conservation Area Saturday afternoon was held in protest of the provincial government's More Homes Built Faster Act.

The act aims to build 1.5 million homes in Ontario over the next 10 years, remove 74,000 acres from the protected greenbelt, add new protected lands elsewhere, and effectively open the land up for housing for the first time.

Protestors say the bill threatens sustainability by not considering the wetlands system as a whole.

"There's a big gap for conservation authorities at this point in terms of funding," said Mike Marcolongo of the Greenbelt Promise Campaign. "Will they be looking at land disposition as a way to make up for it? That's not a fair proposition for them and we're here to remind the public that this is betrayal by the conservator MPPs in this area as well as Premier [Doug] Ford."

They add that the plan wasn't a part of Doug Ford's election campaign and has left some feeling betrayed.

"Every time the premier has said I'm going to open the greenbelt for development people have pushed back and forced the premier to backtrack," said Mike Schreiner, leader of the Ontario Green Party. "He's broken his promise once again. I've documented almost 20 times where the premier and his housing minister explicitly said they would not open the greenbelt for development.

"We have to force the premier to keep his promise."

Some protestors plan to keep holding similar rallies calling for the end to Bill 23. The next one is set for Queens Park in Toronto on Feb. 21. Top Stories

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