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September 24, 2015

Ontario: Bill 73 to Set out Clearer Rules for Land Use Planning and Make Planning Advisory Committees Mandatory

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Ontario Bill 73, Smart Growth for Our Communities Act, 2015, which was tabled March 5, 2015, by Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, was further debated this summer following 2nd reading. The Bill amends the Development Charges Act, 1997 and the Planning Act.

According to the government, revisions to the Development Charges Act, 1997 will give residents more say in how their communities grow, set out clearer rules for land use planning, and provide municipalities with more independence to make local decisions and to fund growth-related infrastructure (i.e. transit).

Changes to the Planning Act will, among other things:
  •  make planning advisory committees mandatory for upper-tier municipalities and for singletier municipalities in southern Ontario (except the Township of Pelee);
  • address extensions of the 180-day period to appeal an approval authority‘s failure to give notice of a decision in respect of an official plan; and
  • add new section 70.6 which authorizes the minister to make regulations for transitional matters.
Related resources: The City of Toronto released a report that provides a summary of the proposed amendments to the
Planning Act and comments on the impact of the changes on the city’s planning approvals process. The report includes
recommendations for Council’s consideration. Access the City of Toronto report (32 pages)

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