The FCA has submitted a letter to the Minister of Housing and Municipal Affairs of Ontario regarding Bill 139. The letter can be viewed here.
The Greenspace Alliance has put together a review of Bill 139, part of the proposed Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act, 2017: Amendments to the Planning Act. The Bill proposes among other things a very substantial reform of the current appeal process for official plans and offical plan and zoning amendments.
In the case of Ottawa, the only basis of appeal would henceforth be whether Council’s decision is consistent with the Provincial Policy Statement (and/or the City’s Official Plan in the case of zoning amendments).
There would also be support for intervenors but we have to await the regulations to know who would be eligible to receive such support and what level of funding will be available.
While this Bill proposes much that communities (and municipalities) have demanded for years, two aspects are surprising and worrisome: An Official Plan or Comprehensive OP Amendment in a single-tier municipality, once approved by the Minister, would not be appealable. And inconsistency with the Planning Act is not cited as a basis for appeal.
Comments on these parts of Bill 139 may be made via the EBR web site (#013-0590) until August 14, 2017. The Bill itself is here. For more background, please visit http://wp.me/P8kfbP-19V; you’ll also find there links to media coverage of this initiative which is updated regularly.
You can find the Greenspace review from July 15 2017 here: http://fca-fac.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Bill-139-note-Draft-2-15Jul2017.pdf
And an earlier discussion paper from late 2016 on the issue here: http://greenspace-alliance.ca/index.php/current-issues-province-of-ontario/first-round-june-2016/discussion-paper-october-2016/
A recent article on what the development community is doing on the issue can be found here.
The final Greenspace Alliance, FonTRA and CELA submissions can be found on the Greenspace Alliance page here.