Councillor Josh Matlow

OMB to be overhauled; New Planning Tribunal Substantive Step for Toronto Neighbourhoods

Cities and residents will have more control over development decisions and community planning

Toronto City Hall – Councillor Josh Matlow welcomed the elimination of the Ontario Municipal Board, to be replaced by the Local Planning Appeals Tribunal, announced by the Province this morning as a positive step toward greater local control of the planning process for Toronto.

“These substantive reforms could finally put vital decisions about how our neighbourhoods will grow into the hands of local planners, communities and ultimately, local elected representatives,” said Matlow. “I look forward to working with the Province to ensure that this new tribunal levels the playing field for residents and contributes to their quality of life.”

Some of the planning process improvements to be implemented by the new Local Planning Appeals Tribunal include:

·         Approved Official Plan updates and amendments will be shielded from appeals in perpetuity
.         New Tribunal will only be allowed to hear cases on the “validity of the decision” by council, making it a true appeals body
·         Secondary Plans will be shielded from appeals for two years
·         New agency to provide local residents with free planning and legal advice as well as representation

Councillor Matlow has been working to eliminate the OMB since 1999 as Campaign Director of the environmental advocacy organization, Earthroots. In 2012, Councillor Matlow and his colleague Councillor Wong-Tam moved a motion to request the provincial government to remove Toronto from the OMB.

Councillor Matlow looks forward to reading the details of the legislation and will provide analysis to his community when this information is made available.


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