Years long battle with the Town goes public over well flow
onto private property
Posted June 24,
Good fences make good neighbours, but a 20 year-old municipal well
developed to service west end Alliston land then owned by former mayor
George McCague, continues to pour water onto the neighbouring property
owned by Frank and Christine Parulski, which is the subject of
Mr. Parulski spoke to councillors last night, the first time the matter
has been made public, asking for immediate action to stop the flow from
the artesian spring that was released when Well 7 (Dyll Well), located
across from the Alliston Christian Community School, was developed.
The Dyll Well was a component of a water supply upgrade in the early
1990s in Alliston that also included the one million gallon water
tower, which was built in haste on site of the previous Alliston
storage tank next to Stevenson Memorial Hospital (SMH). Its location
allowed the Town to bypass the Environmental Assessment process, as a
fast-track plan. The water tower construction triggered a battle with
five Morrow Drive neighbours - including Ken Pratt whose near weekly
visits to council chambers were rife with stories of falling debris
into their yards.
In the end, the Town ended up spending over $1 million to purchase the
five properties, without insurance which refused to cover the costs,
and then sold them at a loss, including riders in the deeds that warned
about using the backyards. That episode cost the Town higher insurance
premiums as a result.
At the time, the Dyll Well, and its estimated 300 galloons of water
output per minute, was the only ground water supply Alliston could tap
into which serviced the McCague properties, that among them were sold
to the public school board to construct Ernest Cumberland School. The
school board had to put the building on deep pilings as stabilization
because the land was swampy. The remaining parcels were sold to Vito
Rizzardo and Previn Court Homes, who then front-ended funding for the
well and water tower construction. In exchange, the Rizzardo's received
credits on development charges, which were locked in, including their
development going on today in the west end, costing the DC accounts
millions of dollars in foregone revenue as a result.
For the Parulski's, they were supposed to receive municipal treated
water as compensation for the neighbouring well and access, but he said
last night that the Town gradually stopped not only abiding by those
terms, but allegedly allowing unchlorinated water to flow through, and
not swabbing and flushing the pipeline since 2002, pushing rust
through. He said they were going to file complaints with the Ministry
"So, I may sound very upset, and I am very upset, as nobody seems to
want to do anything here. I've gone and I've asked, and begged and
pleaded to get things done, and basically I've been turned around and
I'm the problem causer in this township," he said. "I am asking council
that if we can sit down or somebody sit down with us, and truthfully
tell us that this has been totally stopped and there will be no more
flow of water out of that well onto our property, that I will be told
when there is no chlorine in the water. ... All I want to do is correct
it, and know what's going on."
Mayor Mike MacEachern said that from Town staff's perspective, "we're
still in litigation, is it your understanding that it's still in
"All I'm asking you is to stop this water flow," replied Mr. Parulski.
"I am litigating for the water on my property. We can sit down and
discuss stopping litigation if you want, I have no problem with that."
The mayor answered, "Far as I understood, the instructions that we
received were from the insurance company's lawyer that's representing
the Town and as far as I understand, we're not to discuss this matter
because it is ongoing litigation. There are lawyers involved. I'm just
wondering if Frank's lawyer thought this was a good idea for you to
come and make this presentation."
"I made it myself, because like I said, I was totally fed up with
what's going on with you dumping the water on my property," he said.
"This litigation could go on for eight or 10 more years, I want this
issue of you dumping the water on my property ended as of today, which
is separate from the litigation that you have flooded my property, and
how much is it worth, the damage at that point."
Town CAO Terri Caron confirmed the lawsuit is moving to the discovery
stage, and that council could be updated in camera.
"To me, our hands our tied," added Ward 1 councillor Bob Marrs, "we
can't do anything until the litigation is resolved," which prompted Mr.
Parulski to note that "The chlorinated water and rust in our water is
not part of litigation, we'd like to have that problem corrected."
"I've never been briefed on this," added Ward 7 councillor Bruce Haire,
"and probably several others haven't been briefed either."
"The Ministry of Health will be knocking on your door," concluded Mr.