Newsletter Signup

Burlington Mayor Urges Residents to Contact Local MPPs on Bill 108

94A342F7-4A17-45D4-8613-0BAB0C0AFBF3

On May 2, 2019 Bill 108, More Homes, More Choice was introduced by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. Third reading of the bill is expected on June 4, before the house rises for the summer.

The proposed Bill includes changes to 13 pieces of legislation. Three acts were subject to comments; the Development Charges Act, 1997, the Planning Act, and the Heritage Act.

On Monday May 27, 2019, Burlington City Council approved the City Manager’s report CM-11-19, which included the City’s comments and recommendations to the proposed legislation and the following recommendations:

Receive the comments and feedback contained within this report and forward to the Province of Ontario, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing and the Minister of Tourism Culture and Sport, as the City of Burlington’s comments on Bill 108 (More Homes, More Choices Act), Housing Supply Action Plan; and,

Request that the Province of Ontario continue to consult with the City of Burlington on Bill 108, (More Homes, More Choices Act), with adequate time provided prior to Royal Assent and finalization of associated regulations.

At the same meeting, City Council also approved a motion on Bill 108, with the following recommendations:

Now therefore be it resolved that the City of Burlington oppose Bill 108 which in its current state will have negative consequences on community building and proper planning; and

That the City of Burlington call upon the Government of Ontario to halt the legislative advancement of Bill 108 to enable fulsome consultation with Municipalities to ensure that its objectives for sound decision making for housing growth that meets local needs will be reasonably achieved; and

That a copy of this Motion be sent to the Honourable Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario, The Honourable Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier, the Honourable Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs, the Honourable Andrea Horwath, Leader of the New Democratic Party, all MPPs in the Province of Ontario, leaders of the Green Party and Liberal Party; and

That a copy of this Motion be sent to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) and all Ontario municipalities for their consideration.

What you need to know about the changes proposed in Bill 108:

  • DEVELOPMENT CHARGES WILL BE COLLECTED DIFFERENTLY, AND GROWTH MAY NOT PAY FOR GROWTH

Development charges are fees collected by municipalities on new developments to pay for services that support population growth. Currently, municipalities can charge for both “hard services” (e.g. roads, stormwater drainage, fire protection and transit) and “soft services” (e.g. libraries, community centres, arenas, playgrounds, or sports fields).

Bill 108 proposes that the funding for “soft” services be removed from the development charges. Soft services currently account for 18 per cent of our total charge for residential development charges.

Not being able to charge for “soft services” would significantly impact the City’s ability to have growth pay for growth.

  • CHANGES TO THE APPEALS PROCESS

Bill 108 is proposing giving the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) the ability to overturn your elected municipal council’s planning decisions on things like new developments. The City will be required to defend decisions at LPAT based on “best planning outcome” in the context of a hearing de novo (conducting hearings as if no decision had ever been made by a Municipal Council).

The City will no longer be given the opportunity to make a new decision on a matter if LPAT determines that a municipal decision did not follow local/and or provincial policies. Final decisions on appeals will now rest with a non-elected tribunal.

  • SHORTENED DECISION TIMELINES

Bill 108 is proposing shorter timelines for the processing of development applications before they can be appealed to LPAT. This would make it difficult to conduct meaningful, thorough public engagement and be able to incorporate changes to the application based on public input.

  • PROVIDING FUTURE PARKS AND GREEN SPACE MAY BE COST-PROHIBITIVE

Bill 108 will remove the City’s ability to obtain land for parks within new developments to support neighbourhoods and residents within these areas. As Burlington is at full build-out, the ability to obtain parkland for community access is very important and may not be possible if the City is required to purchase land at market rate for parks.

MY TAKE:

These changes do nothing to reduce provincial costs, but do increase the costs to municipalities at a time we are all trying to find efficiencies. Please contact your local MPPs and tell them how Bill 108 will directly affect you as Burlington residents.

4 thoughts on “Burlington Mayor Urges Residents to Contact Local MPPs on Bill 108”

  1. Leslie mcculloch

    Bill 108 totally ignores the fact that municipal governments are better able to manage their own affairs and have a proven record of sustainable development. This pandering to developers is getting worse under Ford.

  2. This bill is simply an initiative on the part of the Provincial government to reduce the cost of developers. Not being allowed to recover “soft costs” will lead to two unacceptable consequences: reduced services or cost increases to municipalities/ratepayers. I don’t recall “…pandering to developers…” being part of the current government’s election platform.

  3. Residents have been told that” growth never paid for growth”. Will this simply mean that it would make a bad situation worse?

What's your take?

Here are guidelines before you comment, and our expectations before we will post:

  • Be civil. Would you speak this way to a good friend? If not, rewrite.
  • Focus on the issues. Build your argument and make your case in support of your opinion from facts, research or other sources. That way we can all learn. “I disagree with so-and-so because…” is fine; “So-and-so is naïve/stupid  for thinking the way he/she does and here’s why…” is not acceptable.
  • Don’t make personal attacks. Don’t assume motives of those you disagree with, make unfounded allegations, spread rumours, or engage in any other behaviours that would discourage you from participating if someone said this to, or about, you. The Golden Rule applies: Do unto others as you would have done to you. We will edit or not post comments with this type of content.
  • Say it once: When comments from the same individual or individuals become repetitive, going over ground already stated, we reserve the right to close commenting.
  • Use your full, and real, name. If wish to make a comment in public, we expect you will publicly stand behind it with your name. If you don’t want to publicly reveal your name, that’s fine; you are always welcome to share your thoughts with me privately via my email below. I welcome and consider all feedback in making decisions for the community.
  • Have fun, consider and learn. Share your views and read those of others. May we all benefit from a healthy exchange of ideas, and learn a little more about the people in our community, what you think, and what’s important to each of you. You may end up changing your mind about an issue; even if you don’t, we hope everyone will gain a greater understanding of why people have different perspectives.

Newsletter Sign Up

Phone: 905-335-7607
Email:  mayor@burlington.ca

Constituent Assistant: Annemarie Cumber
annemarie.cumber@burlington.ca
905-335-7600, ext. 7689