DURHAM REGION HOMEBUILDERS' ASSOCIATION
On June 23, representatives from DRHBA will be meeting with Whitby staff to discuss the proposed Whitby Green Standards.
A special council meeting has been called for July 20, in which staff are asking council to ratify the program.
The Durham Region Home Builders' Association has strenuously objected to implementing the Whitby Green Standards in its current form, as it mandates building above and beyond the Ontario Building Code and the Planning Act.
DRHBA sent separate letters to the committee and to council on May 11 outlining our concerns. A follow up letter was sent on May 29, accompanied by a legal opinion from Leo Longo, a prominent municipal law attorney. To date, DRHBA has received no response from the WGS committee addressing the Association's technical and legal concerns.
As part of the Whitby Green Standards, builders and developers will be required to follow two checklists - Plan of Subdivision Checklist and Site Plan Checklist. The WGS committee is requesting that Tier 1 criteria be made mandatory, and in following years to make each of the additional three tiers mandatory as well.
It should be noted that while there have been three stakeholder sessions, the specific criteria were not released until April 15, and there has been no discussion with the building and development industry on the criteria.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Stacey at email@example.com.
The City of Oshawa will be considering proposed Dust & Mud Control bylaws at its Monday, June 22 electronic council meeting at 9:30 a.m.
The report CNCL-20-122 - Dust and Mud Control Related to Construction and Development Activities will be presented to council. In it are the findings from the public consultation as well as draft bylaws to control dust and mud on adjacent properties and city roads.
Three by-laws are proposed in the report:
The bylaw to amend general fees and charges bylaw 13-2003 is proposing to add:
If you have an concerns about these proposed bylaw, please email Stacey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ontario Home Builders' Association has opened their Awards of Distinction 2020 for 2020.
OHBA is going virtual this year, and you won't want to miss it! It's a great opportunity to showcase your talent across the entire province.
Entering is easy...simply visit www.ohbaaod.ca to enter your submissions.
Early bird pricing ends on June 26th - so enter soon!
In a report to the General Government Committee, staff are recommending that the Town of Ajax proceed with indexing on development charges on July 1.
The full report can be viewed here.
The conclusion of the report is that residential and non-residential development charges levied by the Town of Ajax are being indexed by 2.9% in accordance with by-law 50-2018.
This report will be presented at the Ajax Council meeting on June 15.
At May's Ajax Council meeting, members of council voted to approve the Development Charge Interest Policy developed by staff.
The full policy can be viewed here.
The policy has been created in response to Bill 108: More Homes More Choice Act - Status Update. This policy addresses two parts of Bill 108: the provision that changes the date at which the development charge is calculated; and the provisions that require municipalities to defer collection of development charges over a period of 5 to 20 years for rental housing, institutional development and non-profit housing developments.
The Town has concerns that these provisions will result in a shortfall in the DC collected as compared to the cost of the capital infrastructure required.
The proposed solution to recover that revenue is to implement an interest charge. This charge will be the Bank of Canada Rate plus 2%.
In the Fall of 2019, the Oshawa Accessibility Advisory Committee provided the following recommendation to council:
"Whereas the O.A.A.C. Built Environment Subcommittee is finding numerous site plans with only inaccessible townhomes and stacked townhouses;
Therefore the City require that all residential projects be designed with 15% accessible units with visitable features, including no stairs to entrances doors as well as entrance door and washroom door widths sufficient for mobility devices."
Council referred the recommendation back to staff to have the matter discussed with Oshawa's Building Industry Liaison Team (BILT).
DRHBA was present at the October 29, 2019 meeting where representatives voiced concerns over mandating accessibility, which was followed up by a letter. It was pointed out that many builders offer this option to purchasers already.
As a result, staff presented Report CNCL-20-67 to council on May 25, 2020.
In the report, the following recommendations were made:
It should also be highlighted that the staff report noted that "municipalities are not permitted to require houses, triplexes, and boarding or rooming houses with fewer than eight boarders, to exceed the minimum standards established by the OBC for barrier-free design or otherwise."
At the council meeting, Councillor Rosemary McConkey moved "That the Report CNCL-20-67 be amended to add the following as Parts 2 and 3:
2. That the Province of Ontario be requested to implement changes to the Ontario Building Code to require a portion of all new single-detached dwellings, semi-detached dwellings, row townhouse dwellings proposed in developments in excess of 6 new dwelling units to contain an accessible front entrance, an accessible width front door and an accessible washroom on the ground floor; and,
3. That all Durham Region municipalities be notified of the recommendation directly above and their respective councils encouraged to support this resolution."
Councillor Brian Nicholson moved "That Parts 2 and 3 to Report CNCL-20-67 be referred to staff for a report back to the next meeting of City Council." This recommendation was carried.
Councillor McConkey then moved "That Part 1 of the recommendation contained in Report CNCL-20-67 be referred back to staff." This motion lost.
The vote to adopt the recommendation contained in Report CNCL-20-67 carried.
At the May 25th Oshawa council meeting, council carried a recommendation to temporarily defer payment of development charges until occupancy.
The recommendation contained in Report CNCL-20-62 was before council sitting in Committee of the whole. The following recommendation was carried:
"Therefore, that Council direct staff to work with the Region of Durham and the School Boards to advance changes to all our respective development charges by-laws/policies to delay the payment of residential and non-residential development charges to the time of occupancy of a building is provided rather than at the time the building permit is issued for a limited time in order to help economic recovery in the Region and report back to the Finance Committee."
The proposed changes to the Commercial Tenancies Act would, if passed, temporarily halt evictions of businesses that are eligible for federal/provincial rent assistance. If passed, the legislation would reverse evictions that occurred on or after June 3, 2020. The government intends to bring this legislation forward as soon as possible.
In partnership with the federal government, Ontario is committing $241 million to the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses which is providing more than $900 million in support. CECRA for small businesses provides forgivable loans to eligible commercial landlords to help cover 50 per cent of commercial rent for tenants for the months of April, May and June 2020.
The tenant will be responsible for covering up to 25 per cent of rent, so that up to 75 per cent of the rent is covered. Tenants and landlords can learn how much they may be eligible for by visiting Ontario.ca/rentassistance.
"We need everyone working together to overcome COVID-19," said Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. "Commercial tenants who can pay their rent, must do so. Landlords should work with their tenants to come to an agreement and use this joint program. Ontario's small businesses are the backbone of our economy and we need them to flourish."
If passed, the proposed legislation would make it illegal to evict a commercial tenant until August 31, 2020.
"Working with the federal government, we are providing more than $900 million in relief to tenants and landlords," said Rod Phillips, Minister of Finance. "We've been clear we would support small businesses and today's action does just that."
The Region of Durham has decided not to waive indexing on the development charges on July 1, 2020 as previously recommended by staff. This means that development charge rates will be indexed by 2.9% on July 1, 2020.
On June 9 the Finance & Administration Committee voted to carry Report #2020-F-14, Final Recommendations Regarding Amendments to Regional Residential and Non-Residential Development Charges By-law No. 28-2018. This report recommended that the Regional Development Charge Bylaw No. 28-2018 to waive the annual indexing not be adopted. Council vote unanimously in favour of not waiving indexing.
Starting the end of day Wednesday, July 1 and concluding start of day Monday, July 6, the Enbridge system will be undergoing planned maintenance. This maintenance will occur in former Enbridge Gas service area and will not impact builds in the former Union Gas service area. Some functionality, including access to online gas attachment service requests and final inspections will be impacted during those six days. They are advising builders to request services sufficiently ahead of the July 1 date to ensure their request is in the system.
Call to Action:
Will emergency services be provided during this time?
Yes. Emergency and high priority services will continue to be provided as usual by calling 1-866-763-5427. Safety information is also provided at enbridgegas.com/safety.
Builder Attachment Centers
Can I contact the builder attachment centres for support?
Yes. However, we encourage builders to get in touch with Enbridge before the end of June, as customer attachment representatives will also be limited in the services that they can provide during the planned system maintenance.
Booking Service Appointments
Can I schedule a service appointment or final inspection?
Booking of service appointments will continue until June 30. Booking future service appointments will resume July 6. To request inspections prior to occupancy go to www.buildwithgas.com and click on the Activate Meter Tab.
Will my previously scheduled service appointment between July 1 and July 6 still be completed?
Yes. All appointments scheduled for completion will take place as scheduled. Crews will continue to work in the field and attachments and inspections that have been scheduled for completion between July 1 and July 6 will continue throughout the planned system maintenance.
My New Homeowners - Setting Up "My Account"
Why won't my new home buyer be able to sign-in or access MyAccount?
We will be be experiencing planned system maintenance starting the end of day Wednesday, July 1 and concluding start of day Monday, July 6. As a result, your new homeowners will not be able to access their account information. We ask that you encourage your new homeowners to process their gas account move online at enbridgegas.com/moving prior to June 30.
When will normal service resume?
We look forward to resuming regular services on July 6. Please be aware, our call centre may experience longer than usual wait times once we resume full service. You may wish to take advantage of our online self-service option. For more information, please contract your residential new construction analyst.
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Durham Region Home Builders' Association is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. 101C-1050 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, ON L1G 4W5