1 May 24, 2015 Volume 11, Issue 10 Council supports development rights transfer from MLE lands to neighbouring Deer Park Dr. lands At the May 13 council meeting, council supported a staff recommendation to ask the province to remove lands from the Greenbelt Plan so negotiations to conduct a development rights swap can move forward and save the North Gwillimbury Forest. Currently, the DG Group (formerly Metrus) has provincial, regional and municipal approvals to build a 1,073 housing project on 500 acres known as the Maple Lake Estates. However, the property contains environmentally sensitive features within the North Gwillimbury Forest and a local lobby group, the North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance (NGFA), has fought vigorously to prevent the development. After years of political wrangling, a proposal to transfer the DG Group s development rights from the Maple Lake Estates property to another parcel of land owned by the developer and located nearby on the south side of Deer Park Lane was seen as a potential solution to the stalemate. However, in order for the development rights swap idea to gain traction, the Deer Park south property needs to be removed from the Greenbelt Plan, a provincial legislative policy which restricts development on any property located within its scope. Previous negotiations between the developer and all levels of government have signalled a willingness to explore the development rights swap further but the North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance is against this idea because the south Deer Park property is comprised of arable farmland which they say needs to be protected. They argue the DG Group development rights should be transferred to lands located in south Keswick which have already been approved for future development. Jack Gibbons, Chair of the North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance, was deeply disappointed when council supported the transfer to the south Deer Park lands and he called their performance weak-kneed. It violates the province s Greenbelt policies, it would create more traffic on local roads, it is a terrible example of leapfrog development and it flies in the face of the logic of locating development in urban development zones where it belongs, he said. The south Deer Park option, however, did receive support from both the Town and from the DG Group. Mayor Margaret Quirk and Ward 1 Councillor Naomi Davison were not in Continued on page 3... Council discusses merits of Solar Garden Town council has asked staff to produce a report to help them make a decision on whether or not to support a Solar Garden proposal on 10 acres of land located at 2400 Glenwoods Ave. East in Keswick. Shareholder Gary Foch presented his idea for a ground mount 500 kilowatt solar garden to council on May 20 and said the installation would occupy approximately 4.5 acres at the backend of the proposed site. Mr. Foch supported the proposal by saying energy produced at the site would be consumed locally and suggested the operation could become an asset in the development of the Keswick Business Park as business park acres south of Georgina are absorbed. In theory, this proposal is a complimentary catalyst to help nudge our Keswick Business Park forward today, he said. He also described the enhanced property tax benefits to the town and said the project would produce local jobs for installation and assembly. In the long-term, he said, one to three fulltime contract positions would be Continued on page 5
2 2 It is a move in the right direction I am going to throw a huge bouquet out with my editorial comments this issue. I have always had the utmost respect for Georgina s Director of Planning, Harold Lenters. He is a guy who knows his job and rarely fails in executing it in a very methodical and transparent manner. If there is something he can t talk about, he tells you right up front. And he is always forthcoming with his own thoughts and opinions which are based on his vast experience and the realistic regulatory environment in which he works everyday. So when I opened the agenda for the May 13 council meeting and began reading his report and recommendations regarding the 2015 provincial review of four land use planning documents, I wasn t surprised to find clear, concise language and recommendations that were backed up by logic, common sense and a strong dose of fair play. The one recommendation most people in the audience were anxious to hear council debate was his recommendation to ask the province to remove a parcel of land fronting on the south side of Deer Park Rd. from the Greenbelt so discussions regarding a development rights swap from the Maple Lake Estates to this property could move forward. He presented five options for council to consider and his analysis of each one and its ability to protect the Maple Lake Estates from development led council to support the only option that was fair, realistic and made sense. I realize the North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance and the neighbours bordering both properties, which are owned by DG Group (formerly Metrus), would prefer no development anywhere near their homes. However, I am now convinced the decision by council introduces an opportunity to: a) protect the sensitive wetlands and forests contained within the Maple Lake Estate lands and b) to respect the rights of a property owner who has invested millions of dollars based on previous approvals given by three levels of government. I think if the province agrees to open up the south Deer Park lands to development in exchange for no development on the Maple Lake Estate lands, then the North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance has achieved their goal they have managed to protect the sensitive wetlands and forests they originally set out save. Of course, the discussion isn t over yet. A lot has to happen at every level of government and as Mayor Quirk said, the shovel isn t going in the ground tomorrow. But it is a start, especially if there is a show of good faith by all parties involved. Karen Wolfe, Editor Publisher/Editor Karen Wolfe (705) Proofreader Nancy Koster Advertising Sales & Inquiries Karen Wolfe (705) Distribution Inquiries The Georgina Post 17 Otter Cove Pefferlaw, Ontario L0E 1N0 (705) The Georgina Post publishes on the 10th and 24th of every month (except December 24) and is distributed throughout Georgina and beyond. The contents of this publication are protected by copyright and may only be used for personal and non-commercial use. The Pefferlaw Post accepts no responsibility for claims made for any product or service reported or advertised.
3 Development rights transfer Continued from page 1. favour of intensifying the population densities in south Keswick beyond the approved limits, saying, it should be taken off the table. Keith McKinnon, representing the DG Group at the meeting said, Just to be clear, the proposed transfer of density from Maple Lake to south Keswick is not in the cards for us. We have made that clear from day one. There are two separate ownership groups and it s not possible for us to do that. Mr. McKinnon advised council that the DG Group will formally apply for an LSRCA Section 28 permit which, if approved, would give the green light to move forward with the approved development of the Maple Lake Estates. However, he said the DG Group would wait for a decision on the development rights swap before conducting any activity on the property. It (the Section 28 application) does include an undertaking that would not provide for any action to be taken on that property to allow for further discussions with the province, with the region, with the Conservation Authority and with yourselves to see if we can come to a final resolution on this proposed land swap, he told council. With the province currently reviewing four provincial land use plans, one of which is the Greenbelt Plan, staff and council believe the timing is right to ask the province to remove the Greenbelt restrictions from the south Deer Park lands and in exchange, designate the Maple Lake Estates lands as Protected Countryside and a Natural Heritage System. In a recorded vote on May 13, all but Ward 3 Councillor Dave Neeson, approved the staff recommendation. He said he did not believe council s support to transfer development rights to the south Deer Park lands was in keeping with the province s goal to protect agricultural lands and the environment. At the conclusion of the vote, Mayor Quirk thanked the residents who attended the meeting and said, I know that many of you are not happy with this decision but I firmly believe to achieve the ultimate goal of preserving that area, this is what we have to look at doing. A Town of Georgina statement said Town Council decided to strike a balance after conducting an extensive review of all possible options. The recommendation will now be sent to the province for review and following their analysis of all comments received, a draft of the various amendments to the four provincial plans will be available for public consultation to gain feedback on the proposed amendments. North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance Chair Jack Gibbons asks council to support transferring development rights to south Keswick. DG Group representative Keith McKinnon tells council a south Keswick option is not possible since lands there are under different ownership. 3
4 4 Tennyson Tidbits It s that time of year again when bear sightings in Pefferlaw are all but rare. This photo was sent to us by Ivan Sedore from his property on Morning Glory Rd. in Pefferlaw and I also saw a photo of a sighting by Evelene Bain on Old Homestead Rd. Beware! Happy Birthday wishes go out to Jay Yedvab, who will celebrate his 80th birthday on May 30. Cheers to you, Jay! We also want to send a very Happy 80th Birthday greeting to Mary Piercey of Pefferlaw who will celebrate on June 1. Enjoy your day, Mary! And, Chantelle Noble of Keswick will blow out 38 candles on her birthday cake on May 30. Happy Birthday, Chantelle! We would like to send a Get Well Soon message out to Steve Hales who is recovering in hospital from major heart surgery. We hope to see you up and about soon, Steve. Congratulations go out to Charity Trumble and Sean Eaton on the birth of Jaydyn, 7lb. 14 oz. on April 3. Proud grandparents are Farmer Porte and Freda Trumble. Oriented Congratulations to Anita and Dave Haynes and their staff at Sutton Home Hardware on receiving the 2015 Proud of my Home Achievement Award for being the top retail Home Hardware store in Area 4. This is the second year in a row they ve won the award!
5 Staff to bring back report on solar garden 5 Continued from page 1. required for management and maintenance. Mr. Foch said a council decision prior to July 15, 2015 was necessary as the window to successfully compete in the next round of FIT (Feed-in- Tariff) energy contracts from the governing bodies would close on July 31, However, Mayor Margaret Quirk said she would like additional information and public consultation prior to making a decision. I m not sure I m comfortable making a decision today, Mayor Margaret Quirk said. It s the first time we ve seen it and the public hasn t seen it. I think we need to have some more information from our staff. Regional Councillor Wheeler agreed and said he believed there was a willingness by council to find out more information. I wouldn t bother sending it to staff if I knew I were going to say no and I don t think anyone else here would, he said. Council was advised that there was a sense of urgency for a decision due to the FIT window of opportunity. Mr. Foch said if he and his partners missed the deadline for the 2015 offering, the next FIT offering in 2016 would not be viable. He said kilowatt pay rates were declining about 30 per cent with each FIT offering. As the FIT program moves forward there is an aggressive erosion of the FIT rates that are paid for kilowatt hours, he said. It is very unlikely that the 2016 FIT intake window is going to make business sense. Council voted to request staff to come back to council with a report on the matter on or before July 15, 2015.
6 6 Town will ask province to shrink Pefferlaw Settlement area boundary The Province of Ontario has launched a co -ordinated review of four land use planning documents (the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, the Niagara Escarpment Plan, the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan and the Greenbelt Plan) with the intent of amending and improving them. And, if the province acts on a request by council to reconfigure the Greenbelt surrounding the village of Pefferlaw, thousands of acres of land will become protected under the policies of the plan and ensure Pefferlaw remains a rural community. Currently, the Pefferlaw Settlement Area designation under the Greenbelt Plan has a boundary that encompasses 2,518 hectares (6,222 acres) of land. Once the new proposed boundary is approved, the Pefferlaw boundary will shrink to 1,022 hectares (2,525 acres) a reduction of 59 per cent in land area and 1,486 hectares (3,686 acres) will be transferred to the Greenbelt and fall under its protection policies. In a report to council on May 13, the Director of Planning Harold Lenters, supported the boundary realignment explaining that much of the lands being transferred contain natural heritage features and agricultural lands never intended for growth. As outlined, the growth potential for Pefferlaw is minimal (100 residents between 2013 and 2031) and therefore, a smaller Settlement Area designation would more accurately reflect the future growth forecasted for this Settlement Area, he said. During the Province s review of the Greenbelt Plan, it has expressed a desire to grow the Greenbelt in order to add additional land to the 1.8 million acres of environmentally sensitive and agricultural land that currently form Ontario s Greenbelt. The contraction of the existing 2,518 hectare Pefferlaw Settlement Area boundary to a more logical limit would transfer the balance of the Settlement Area to the Greenbelt lands, thereby growing the Greenbelt, he said. In addition to the various natural heritage features and hydrologic features within the Pefferlaw Secondary Plan land area, there are also 1,461 hectares of land identified as Class 1, 2 and 3 lands which are defined as Prime Agricultural Lands by the Provincial Policy Statement. In his report to council, Mr. Lenters said the analysis and rationale for the recommended new boundary resulted in a proposed boundary that is form fit to the existing built up areas and natural features. The Province has indicated that the coordinated review has two rounds of consultation. The first round seeks input in identifying how the four Plans can better meet their objectives and the second round will Existing Towns/Villages Settlement Area Boundary Proposed Towns/Villages Settlement Area Boundary **Map does not delineate the boundary with 100% precision. The Town of Georgina approved a recommendation to reduce the current Pefferlaw Settlement Area by 59 per cent allowing 1,486 hectares to be put under the protection policies of the Greenbelt. focus on obtaining feedback on potential amendments to the Plans. The proposed new Pefferlaw Settlement Area recommendation will form part of a number of other recommendations Georgina s planning department is making and will be submitted to the province by the May 27, 2015 deadline. According to Mr. Lenters, a public consultation session will be organized once the proposed amendments to the Plans become available.
7 Environmental action groups weigh in on land use plans As municipalities across Ontario meet to provide their comments to the Province by May 27, 2015 before it releases its proposed amendments to four provincial land use plans, so, too, are environmental action groups. The South Lake Simcoe Naturalists (SLSN) are on record approving Georgina council s decision to shrink the Pefferlaw Settlement Area in the Pefferlaw Secondary Plan to allow for more agricultural and natural features to be protected under the Greenbelt Plan. This is what we (SLSN) have been pushing for ever since the Greenbelt was first established, said SLSN president Paul Harpley. And, the group is asking its membership to complete a Greenbelt Review comment form and participate in a club subcommittee to develop comprehensive comments on the Greenbelt and the Town of Georgina s new Official Plan. In addition, Environmental Defense has just released a new report called Smarter Growth and it provides recommendations for the province to consider as they go through the process of co-ordinating their review of the four land use plans: The Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, the Greenbelt Plan, the Oak Ridges Moraine Plan and the Niagara Escarpment Plan. Focussing primarily on the Growth Plan and the Greenbelt Plan, the report identifies seven recommendations on how these plans can deliver smart growth and prevent urban sprawl. The group wants the province to freeze urban boundary expansion for the next 10 years and suggests there is already enough land set aside by municipalities to accommodate forecasted growth. We don t need to keep sprawling over our farmland, the report says. They recommend the Greenbelt be expanded to include additional prime agricultural land and natural heritage systems and they want to have intensification targets enforced in urban growth centres. It s time for cities in the Greater Golden Horseshoe to grow up, not out, the report states. By supporting smarter (more intensive) growth, we can create the healthy communities we want, that attract the businesses we need and create neighbourhoods and communities instead of just building identical single family houses on farmland. But according to the Mayor of Brock Township, John Grant, a cookie-cutter approach to managing growth in his GTA municipality may not be feasible. Brock Township reached its sewer and water capacity long ago and this limits its ability to accommodate any growth through intensification. In addition, much of the Township is locked within the existing Greenbelt Plan which also reduces their ability to grow. I believe Brock Township is the only community within the GTA that has a declining population, Mr. Grant said, adding, the 2001 census showed a population of 12,000 and it was 11,330 in We have urban land that could be developed if we had sewer and water capacity, he said. He says he is surrounded by municipalities such as Ramara and Kawartha Lakes which have large areas not in the Greenbelt and as such, can direct their own growth plans. It is good to protect green spaces but we should be equal partners in this, he said. 7
8 8 Residents push back against development proposed for Strawberry Island A development company out of Alberta has submitted applications to amend the Official Plan and a rural zoning designation in Ramara Township to build a 120 unit mixed -use seasonal community on Strawberry Island. Trans America Group, based in Edmonton, owns the 28-acre Lake Simcoe island and defended their most recent plans before residents and council at an April 27, 2015 council meeting. Their plan, which originally proposed the 120 unit development at a public meeting last fall, was recently revised to address public comments voiced at that time. But opponents to the plan say the revisions do not go far enough and the island should be left rural to protect its significant natural features and prevent additional phosphorous loading on Lake Simcoe. The Lake Simcoe island is located off the coast of McRae Point Provincial Park and features several buildings offering retreat style accommodation with eight acres of cleared lawns. The island was once visited by Pope John Paul II in 2002 during his Canadian tour. Local area resident Pam Fulford is leading the charge against the development and addressed Ramara council on May 11 in response to a previous deputation made by the developers. She says the developer s plan calls for five buildings, three stories tall that would accommodate 500 people and Strawberry Island, as it appears today at the north end of Lake Simcoe. Concept plan for the development of Strawberry Island. require a footprint of all but three hectares of trees. With this construction, most of the island s eight hectare woodland will be cut down and replaced with buildings, asphalt, manicured lawns, a thin line of trees along the shoreline and scattered trees among houses and three storey buildings, she said. Additionally, Ms. Fulford says, the plans do not conform to many regulations set out in the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan, the Provincial Policy Statement nor the Simcoe County Official Plan. She said the plan depicts a perfect storm of development impacts. She says she is not against any development, but says it should adhere to existing land use legislation that regulates the property s use.
9 New EMS station in Pefferlaw VIPs from across York Region were on hand on May 11 to help officially open the new EMS building located on Hastings Dr. in Pefferlaw. Although the $1.3 million building was designed to accommodate two paramedic response teams and ambulances on a 24/7 basis, the station s historical complement of one ambulance and crew will continue until growth in the Georgina area dictates additional support is required. Adelina Urbanski, the Commissioner of Community and Health Services, said Station #10 is strategically placed and was designed with the future in mind. She said paramedics provide an important role as a member of the health care team and she expects this role to increase with additional skills and training. Since 2000, York Region s EMS team has grown from 148 paramedics, 16 ambulances and 14 stations to 550 paramedics, 94 ambulances and 21 stations in National Nursing Week MPP Julia Munro dropped into the Georgina Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic in Jackson s Point last week where she underwent a mock examination as she joined staff in celebrating National Nursing Week. The theme for this year s occasion We re with you every step of the way, gave Ms. Munro a first hand look at the process new patients experience when they are welcomed at the Clinic. National Nursing Week (May 11 to May 17) shines a light on the contribution nurses make to the health care of Canadians throughout the year. The Georgina Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic currently offers MPP Julia Munro has her blood pressure taken by Nurse Practitioner Anne Hughes during National Nursing Week. primary health care to 2,900 patients and provides 1,500 weeks of physiotherapy for their patients. According to Clinic Director Beth Cowper-Fung, the capacity of the clinic is 3,200 patients with the expectation that the clinic will expand its reach to meet the community s growing health care needs. GTTI hosts Alternative Education Conference Alternative education providers from across York Region attended a one-day conference on May 8 at the GTTI to explore options and discuss how the GTTI mandate could assist in helping their students succeed. The intent of the conference was to show not only what GTTI The Training Centre provides, but also what the work of our partners and similar organizations across the region provide, said GTTI Executive Director David Geene. Feedback from the 50 attendees was positive, Mr. Geene said, and generally they found GTTI services essential and it was a day of optimism, helpful, innovative and informative.
10 10 The long weekend was not short on yard sales as various not-forprofit organizations took the opportunity to raise some money for their charitable causes. (And, the weather was in their favour.) Right, shoppers stroll and look over the huge selection of goods donated to the Virginia United Church for their sale on Saturday, May 16. And, Lorraine s hot dogs were a huge hit! The PAR Picnic Fundraising Yard Sale on Saturday and Sunday, May 16 and 17 featured a quilt raffle in addition to many donated treasures which allowed the organization to raise over $1, Tickets for the quilt, which was donated by Carol Wolfe, are still available for the draw on June 15. (Left) There was no better Mother s Day breakfast deal in Georgina on May 10 than the one served at the Sutton Legion. For $5, Mom was treated to bacon, eggs, sausage, toast, pancakes, juice and coffee. (Right) Pam and Pat Devine participate in Sutton s Spring Fling with donated items to raise money for Pine Beach. Re-enactors convinced visiting students to join the 1837 Rise to Rebellion at the Georgina Pioneer Village. The conflict was a pivotal moment in Canada history and on May 7, students came face-to-face with William Lyon Mackenzie and marched alongside him and military re-enactors to take part in the struggle that led to responsible government in Canada. Yes, it happened here!
11 (Left) Jack Little holds up a plant for auction at the Beaverton Horticultural Plant Auction on Sat. May 9. (Right) Jagged Edge Hair Studio in Sutton sponsored a fundraising campaign in support of Juvenile Diabetes on May 9 and shows off the numerous items donated for a raffle. 11 Staff and volunteers are all smiles at the Cedardale Church of the Nazarene during their Annual Junk in the Trunk sale on May 9. NOW IN STOCK! At the May 6 council meeting, Mayor Margaret Quirk (left) and Georgina Fire Fighter Keith Wells (centre) are recognized by Kathy Mitchell from MADD for their support of the MADD 911 campaign launched at the ROC on Monday, May 4. SHAW PRO HARDWARE 533 PEFFERLAW ROAD PEFFERLAW, ONTARIO L0E 1N0 Telephone: (705) Fax: (705) Brent Shaw STORE HOURS Monday Friday 8:30 a.m. 7:00 p.m. Saturday 8:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Sunday 9:30 a.m. 5:00 p.m. CHECK OUT OUR NEW METAL SHINGLES
12 12 Coming Events & Announcements The Sutton Legion Ladies Auxiliary is hosting a Pamper Me Day on Sat. May 23 from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. Indoor/Outdoor Yard Sale at Trinity United Church in Cannington on Sat. May 23 from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Keswick Christian Church is hosting its 3rd Annual 9 Hole Golf Scramble on Sat. May 23 at Orchard Beach Golf Course. Tee off at 2:00 pm. Call Mike (905) The Georgina Military Museum will host the 7th Annual Georgina Salutes event on Sat. May 23 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Admission $5. Vehicles, re-enactors, silent auction. Victorian Tea at Cayley Hall in Roches Pt. on Sat. May 23 from 2:00 4:00 pm. The Town of Georgina will host a public information session at the Pefferlaw Lions Community Centre on Mon. May 25 at 7:00 pm to discuss CN Rail Emergency Measures and the Station Rd. Sidewalk. Attend a Ward Chat with Ward 1 Councillor Naomi Davison on Tues. May 26 at 6:00 pm at Our Lady of the Lake High School. The Routes General Meeting will be held at 112B High St. on Tues. may 26 at 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Keswick Christian Church will serve a free dinner on Wed. May 27 from 5:00 to 6:30 pm. Attend a Ward Chat with Ward 2 Councillor Dan Fellini on Thurs. May 28 at 6:30 pm at the Ice Palace. The Pefferlaw Lioness Purina Walk for Dog Guides will be held at the Pefferlaw Lions Hall on Sat. May 30 at 9:00 a.m. St. Anthony s in Virginia is holding a Yard Sale on Sat. May 30. Spaces available for $10 and donations welcome. Call (705) The Cannington Lawn Bowling Club will host a Bake/Yard Sale fundraising event on Sat. May 30 from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Catch the D-Day parade on Sun. May 31 from the Sutton Library to Briar Hill at 2:00 pm. Sat. May 30 candlelight vigil at dusk. The Georgina Lawn Bowling organization will celebrate the launch of their season on Tues. June 2 at 9:45 a.m. The 5th Annual GTTI Golf Classic tees off at the Briars on Wed. June 3. Call Cedardale Church in Pefferlaw holds a Free Community Dinner on Wednesday, June 3 at 6:00 p.m. All Welcome. Attend the 6th Annual Young at Heart Lifestyle Show at Keswick High School on Sat. June 6 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Coin, antique, jewellery appraisals and more. The Beaverton Thorah Historical Society is hosting their 31st Annual Antique Show at the Beaverton Arena on June 6 & 7. $4. Giant Garage Sale at the Sutton-by-the-Lake Clubhouse on Sat. June 6. 8:00 am to noon. Attend a Ward Chat with Ward 5 Councillor Dave Harding on Tues. June 9 at 6:30 pm at the Udora Hall. The Pefferlaw Fire Fighters Association will be hosting their annual fundraising Car Wash on June 13 at the Pefferlaw Fire Hall from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. Wilfrid will host their village-wide yard sale on Sat. June 13. Pancake breakfast starts at 8:00 am. 2nd Annual History tour ($15). The Georgina Girls Hockey Association will host their 5th Annual Golf tournament at the Pines of Georgina on Sat. June 20. 1:00 pm start. Attend a Ward Chat with Ward 4 Councillor Frank Sebo on Tues. June 23 at 6:30 pm at Sutton Arena. Come on out and help Georgina celebrate the PanAm Games during their Torch Run on Fri. June 26 at the Georgina Ice Palace. Volunteers wanted. Call at (905) Sign up for the Lake Simcoe Red Devils U11 Girls Soccer Golf Tournament fundraiser on Sat. June 27 at the Pines of Georgina. Classified Ads FOR SALE OR SEASONAL RENT April to October with shed. Fully furnished, 1 bedroom, 2-bath mobile home. Green Acres, Pefferlaw. Hwy. 48. Call (905) MOVING/ESTATE SALE Saturday, June 20. 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. BM pottery, Mikasa dishes, antiques and collectables, hardware. 65 Burke St. Sutton Life Insurance
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