Press Release: Residents from Across Toronto Convene to Stop Ford Government from Bringing back OMB

TORONTO, May 27, 2019 – Residents and community leaders from across Toronto convened at City Hall tonight to educate themselves about the Ford Government’s plan to bring back the OMB and mobilize to stop it. Councillors Kristyn Wong-Tam, Josh Matlow, and Gord Perks convened the town hall event with Toronto’s Chief Planner, Gregg Lintern. Councillors Paula Fletcher, Mike Layton, Joe Cressy, Ana Bailão, and Brad Bradford were also present and active supporters.

Introduced to the Ontario Legislature on May 2, 2019, Premier Ford and Minister Clark’s Bill 108 - the More Homes, More Choice Act, 2019 - undermines local planning, weakens residents say, and gives more control to members of the politically appointed Local Planning Appeals Tribunal (LPAT). Ontarians only have days left to make their voices heard, before Premier Ford hands more power over to developers. The last day for public submissions will be June 1, 2019.

 

"City Council worked hard with residents to reform the OMB," said Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam. "We made significant progress in 2017, getting the Province to agree to turn it into the Local Planning and Appeals Tribunal and adopting new rules that put good planning ahead of unchecked development. The Ford government’s Bill 108 hands power over to the development industry and will starve Toronto’s neighbourhoods of the funds they need to build parks, expand childcare, and invest in critical infrastructure.”

“Premier Ford's plan to bring back the Ontario Municipal Board rules will give an unelected and unaccountable body the power to ignore our local democracy and community planning", said Councillor Josh Matlow. "Forcing residents to pay more, while developers pay less for services and infrastructure, is a huge win for the industry at the expense of services like childcare, parks, recreation centres, and necessary infrastructure that support the quality of life in our neighbourhoods.”

"Bill 108 puts more power in the hands of developers and their lobbyists," said Councillor Gord Perks. "We cannot allow an unaccountable and unelected body to determine local planning decisions. Residents, City Councillors, and community members have come together tonight to take a stand against Premier Ford and these unwanted changes."

Tonight's event also featured an introduction presentation on Bill 108 by Annely Zonena, Senior Planner from Strategic Initiatives for City of Toronto, a Q&A with the City’s Chief Planner, Gregg Lintern, and an expert panel moderated by Matt Elliott. Panel participants included Allison Bain, Executive Director of Heritage Toronto, Joseph Castrilli, Environmental Lawyer with the Canadian Environmental Law Association, and Councillors Wong-Tam, Matlow, and Perks.

Members of the public can submit comments online on Bill 108 through the Environmental Registry of Ontario (ERO) at the three following pages:

Amendments to the Planning Act

https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-0016

Amendments to the Development Charges Act

https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-0017

Amendments to the Ontario Heritage Act

https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-0021

 

Members of the public can also contact Minister Steve Clark directly:

Hon. Steve Clark

Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing

College Park 17th Flr, 777 Bay St, Toronto, ON M5G 2E5

416-585-7000

minister.mah@ontario.ca

 

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Media interviews available upon request.

Please contact: Tristan Downe-Dewdney, Chief of Staff, Councillor Wong-Tam, tristan.downe-dewdney@toronto.ca.

Phone: 416-392-7903
Constituency Office: 100 Queen St W A5, Toronto, ON, M5H 2N2