The Toronto Sun

Aug 29, 2008

BARRIE — A judge yesterday ruled that there are no grounds to grant a peace bond to protect a Georgian Bay homeowner after his neighbour shoved dog feces in his face, a court heard yesterday.

“To say it’s rude is an understatement,” said Justice of the Peace Gerry Solursh, but he ruled the incident does not warrant a peace bond.

The dog feces incident, which occurred at Balm Beach in Tiny Township last May, is just one of a string of unsavoury and violent incidents which homeowner John Marion, 63, alleges have been directed at him.

Marion has been the target of insults and spite ever since he erected a two-metre wooden fence on his property in 2006.

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The Alliston Herald

August 12, 2008

Cooler heads seemed to have prevailed over hot tempers at Balm Beach in recent weeks. Following a summer of discontent at the beach, that’s no small development.

A heavily publicized police presence at the beach might have something to do with the easing of tensions over the public/private beach-use controversy, but let’s hope common sense is also playing a role.

Southern Georgian Bay OPP signalled their plans to have more officers on hand during the August long weekend, to ward off potential trouble of the type that has flared there recently.

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Toronto Star

July 25, 2008

BALM BEACH–The much-disputed 2-metre-tall wooden fence at the centre of a controversy in Balm Beach has been charred by fire.

Midland firefighters were called at about 3 a.m. yesterday to extinguish the 45-metre-long wooden fence at the centre of a very public fight that has pitted neighbour against neighbour in cottage country on Georgian Bay, about 90 minutes north of Toronto.

Orillia OPP Communications Officer Sgt. Rob Michaud gave no information other than to confirm the fence was set alight.

“The particulars of how it was set are still being investigated, but I doubt it spontaneously combusted,” Michaud said.

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Meaford Express

July 8, 2008

Tiny Township is refusing to get involved in the public-vs-private rights in Balm Beach – an issue that has led to violence and vandalism charges.

 “Recent events in the Township of Tiny involving land disputes have escalated to reports of damage to property. I would like to advise the residents of our township that we are working closely with law enforcement to ensure these disputes are resolved peacefully and respectfully,” Mayor Peggy Breckenridge said in a July 4 statement.

“Both the council and staff of the Township of Tiny strive to make our township a safe and secure community to live and visit. One way to ensure community safety is to develop and strengthen partnerships both in our township and in surrounding municipalities. One such current partnership is that with the OPP.”

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Meaford Express

Aug 1, 2008

Southern Georgian Bay OPP readied Friday to step up patrols over the long weekend in hopes
of heading off potential trouble near a controversial waterfront fence in Balm Beach.

“We’re there to make sure everyone who’s in the area is enjoying Balm Beach in the proper manner,” Const. Peter Leon said Friday. “Our primary focus is safety and security.”

The plans for the weekend include additional officers patrolling alongside Tiny Township bylaw enforcement officers.

The police presence is to include personnel on foot and in cruisers, though Leon emphasizes it is not the job of the police to guard the fence.

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Midland Mirror

July 22, 2008

Vandals have once again taken aim at the now infamous fence on the north side of Balm Beach.

The long-running dispute surrounding the construction of the two-metre-high cedar fence that divides the public beach from private property has been front and centre since late last month, when a Unionville man reportedly took a chainsaw to a section of the fence.

Less than two weeks later, someone damaged another section of the fence, and on July 15, the Marions woke up to find someone had fired a pellet gun at one of the cars parked in their driveway.

“It’s ongoing. Every day we wonder what (people) are going to do to us,” John Marion tells The Mirror.

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Jul 4, 2008

Police have made an arrest in connection with the now infamous June 29 incident at Balm Beach.

A long-running dispute surrounding the construction of a two-metre-high cedar fence that divides the public beach from private property took a nasty turn that day when a man took a chainsaw to a section of the fence.

A crowd of people cheered when the section of fence was removed, witnesses said.

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