This consultation was open from:
May 13, 2021
to June 27, 2021
We are proposing new regulations to focus conservation authorities on their core mandate by prescribing mandatory programs and services they must provide, give municipalities greater control over what conservation authority programs and services they will fund, consolidate “Conservation Areas” regulations and to require community advisory boards.
On December 8, 2020, Bill 229, the Protect, Support and Recover from COVID-19 Act (Budget Measures), 2020, which made changes to the Conservation Authorities Act and the Planning Act, received Royal Assent.
These changes will improve the governance, oversight and accountability of conservation authorities, while respecting taxpayer dollars by giving municipalities more say over the conservation authority programs and services they pay for.
The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) is now proposing to move forward with our first of two phases of regulatory amendments to implement the legislative changes previously made to the Conservation Authorities Act and those recently made through the Protect, Support and Recover from COVID-19 Act (Budget Measures), 2020.
The regulations the government proposes to introduce as part of the first phase would set out the following:
- Mandatory programs and services that conservation authorities would be required to provide, including core watershed-based resource management strategies.
- A requirement for agreements between conservation authorities and their participating municipalities for the use of municipal levies to fund non-mandatory programs and services an authority determines are advisable in its jurisdiction.
- The proposed regulation may set out a specific time in which the agreements must be reviewed and to determine whether or not the agreements will be renewed.
- Details of the transition plan conservation authorities must prepare, including an inventory of the authority’s programs and services, the consultation process with participating municipalities on the inventory, and steps taken to enter into these agreement(s) with participating municipalities for the use of municipal levies for non-mandatory programs and services the authority determines are advisable in its jurisdiction.
- The consolidation of each of the current individual conservation authority ‘Conservation Areas’ regulations made under Section 29 of the Conservation Authorities Act into one Minister’s regulation. This would set out, for example, prohibited activities and activities requiring permits on conservation authority owned lands.
- Requirements for each conservation authority to establish a community advisory board to include members of the public, and providing that conservation authority by-laws may govern the operation of these and other advisory boards that may be established by the authority.
Greater detail on these proposed regulations can be found in a Consultation Guide.
In the coming months, the MECP will be consulting on the second phase of proposed regulations under the Conservation Authorities Act, including:
- Municipal levies governing the apportionment of conservation authority capital and operating expenses for mandatory programs and services and for non-mandatory programs and services under municipal agreement. This would also set out provisions pertaining to municipal appeals of conservation authority municipal levy apportionments, including who would hear those appeals.
- Standards and requirements for the delivery of non-mandatory programs and services.
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Important notice: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, viewing supporting materials in person is not available at this time.
Please reach out to the Contact listed in this notice to see if alternate arrangements can be made.
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