Government Spying and Bullying Must Stop
A post on the Ontario Landowners Association Facebook page, “The Death of the Hunt Camp”, has struck a chord with the people of Ontario, as indicated by almost 200,000 views in a couple of weeks.
A municipal building inspector found a “Hunt Camp” on private property using satellite technology. He then tried to bully and intimidate the property owner into getting a building permit and allowing an on-site inspection. The property owner said no.
The building inspector then asked the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) to do a Market Value Assessment of the hunt camp. MPAC produced a grossly-inflated Market Value Assessment without seeing the building and without any data or measurements. The family then received a tax bill for over $6000.
The Trillium Party of Ontario supports the long-standing tradition among Ontario citizens to create un-serviced snowmobile meeting places, fishing shacks, tree forts, hide-a-ways and hunt camps. That reflects the spirit of entrepreneurship and defiant individualism that drove our ancestors to take on the wilds of North America and to create this great country.
Though this may seem like a rural issue the “high tech” surveillance methods currently being used without warrants or permission from the owners of private property could just as easily be used by MPAC or others to “spy” on urban areas searching for money-making opportunities such as swimming pools, decks or garden sheds.
There are laws in place to prevent this type of “peeping tom” behaviour and warrantless investigation. And if the government refuses to abide by these laws, the Trillium Party believes there is little reason to expect private citizens to abide. Our government should lead by example and honour the reasonable expectation of privacy by its citizens in both rural and urban environments.
Under no circumstances will the Trillium Party of Ontario condone the use of telescopes, satellites, drones or any other high-tech technology by any agents of government to intrude on the freedoms of the citizens of Ontario without a court warrant. Under no circumstances will it tolerate the abuse of power by government officials to coerce citizens to comply.
The Job of government is to serve people and to protect their rights and not to abuse them.
Jack MacLaren MPP
The Trillium Party works for you!