Yesterday, Steve Clark, the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, tabled the provincial government's new housing legislation. Entitled the More Homes for Everyone Act, 2022, this legislation takes major steps to reduce red tape, streamline development approval processes, work with all levels of government and industry to accelerate the new housing stock and, charts a roadmap to implement the recommendations from the Housing Affordability Task Force with a commitment to bring forward annual Housing Supply Action Plans each year over the next four years.
See below relevant links to the legislation, OHBA’s news release and the provincial news release.
See below a detailed breakdown on key parts of the legislation that members should be aware of. OHBA will be reviewing the legislation in full and participating in consultation processes in the near future.
SITE PLAN CONTROL:
Proposed Planning Act and City of Toronto Act, 2006 amendments would streamline site plan requirements and approval processes by:
Proposed Planning Act amendments that would apply to all site plan applications received on and after January 1, 2023, would incentivize municipalities to make timely decisions by:
PLANS OF SUBDIVISION:
Proposed Planning Act amendments would streamline subdivision approval processes by:
ZONING BY-LAW AMENDMENTS
Proposed Planning Act amendments that would apply to all rezoning applications received on and after January 1, 2023, would incentivize municipalities to make timely decisions by:
COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE AND HOUSING ACCELERATOR
The government is introducing a new tool to help municipalities accelerate their own planning process – the Community Infrastructure and Housing Accelerator (CIHA). It would help municipalities speed up approvals for housing and community infrastructure, while increasing transparency and accountability. This tool would:
Proposed changes to the Building Code:
Increase transparency and certainty of development charges (DCs), community benefit charges (CBCs) and parkland dedication levies by:
Proposed regulation-making authority related to the use of surety bonds and other instruments used to secure development obligations by municipalities, that would enable future regulations to:
ONTARIO LAND TRIBUNAL (OLT)
The provincial government will invest over $19 million to help the OLT and the Landlord and Tenant Board speed up decisions and reduce the backlog of cases. Funding will:
Proposed changes to the Planning Act to assist in depoliticizing planning decisions,
BETTER UTILIZING PROVINCIALLY OWNED LANDS
REGULATORY AND WARRANTY CHANGES
At the March 9 meeting of the Region of Durham Committee of the Whole, the committee received report 2022-COW-7, which details the Regional Incentive Program for Affordable Housing.
Proposed Framework for the At Home Incentive Program:
5.1 The proposed At Home Incentive Program is intended to support the development of new affordable rental housing projects. The program will provide the opportunity to increase the supply of affordable rental housing for low-income households, including households on the DASH wait list, and to grow the supply of safe, adequate and affordable rental housing.
5.2 Eligible affordable housing rental projects under the At Home Incentive Program will provide a minimum of 5 affordable housing units and will include:
a) New construction;
b) Conversion of non-residential buildings to purpose-built rental housing;
c) Addition of new affordable buildings/units to existing sites/buildings;
d) Community housing redevelopment that increases the supply of affordable housing units.
5.3 To expedite project delivery and to enable competition for Regional incentives, staff recommend that the Region publicly announce invitations for eligible affordable housing proposals through an annual call for applications. This approach can be facilitated through a registry of non-profit and private developers of affordable rental housing, which will be regularly updated by staff.
5.4 A minimum of 5 per cent of total units in eligible projects must be affordable at no more than 100 per cent of CMHC average market rent for a minimum 25-year period of affordability. However, a higher proportion of affordable units, deeper affordability and a longer affordability period will be preferred.
5.5 Eligible projects will be evaluated based on real-time community need and Regional preferences. Consideration of project eligibility will include an evaluation of the following, but not limited to:
a) financial and operational ability to carry the project and ability to meet debt coverage ratio requirements;
b) number of units and percentage of units in the project that will be affordable;
c) period of affordability;
d) depth of affordability;e)community need, including but not limited to, targeted groups, unit size and geographic location;
f) cost per unit;
g) extent to which the project meets accessibility standards with respect to barrier-free designs, elevators and other accessibility features;
h) extent to which the project aligns with the Region’s climate emergency declaration and supports implementation of the Durham Community Energy Plan, including consideration of the project’s energy efficiency measures to reduce utility operating costs and its operational GHG emissions footprint; and
i) proximity to transit, community amenities and services.
5.6 To be successful in providing adequate funding for the At Home Incentive Program, base funding is necessary to ensure that a critical mass of units can be funded. To initiate the At Home Incentive Program, it is recommended that the Region establish an At Home Incentive Program Reserve Fund (AHIPRF). To activate the Program, it is recommended that $5 million from the Regional Revitalization Program Reserve be transferred to the recommended new AHIPRF.
5.7 To optimize project outcomes, the At Home Incentive Program will be stackable with other programs offered by the Region and other levels of government including but not limited to:
a) the Regional Revitalization Plan (RRP) which allows the Region to providecapital grants for private redevelopment projects, sponsored by the areamunicipalities within their respective Community Improvement Plan (CIP)areas. The RRP has been successful in providing capital grants to eligiblerevitalization projects within downtown areas;
b) the Housing Services Development Charges Reserve Fund for eligibleprojects; and
c) incentive programs or funding opportunities offered by federal or provinciallevels of government.
5.8 To activate the At Home Incentive Program, staff will develop a set of program guidelines and administrative framework, that will include but not be limited to:
a) project eligibility requirements;
b) details of program administration, including the process for inviting and reviewing candidate affordable housing projects, processes for ensuring that affordability targets are achieved;
c) monitoring and resourcing requirements to ensure that awarded projects continue to be compliant with program requirements;
d)legal remedies in the event of a default, either during construction or once an awarded project is in operation, including repayment of Regional financial assistance or disposition of projects; and
e) a communications plan to maximize uptake of the program.
You can view the presentation and discussion here.
If you have any questions, comments and concerns, contact Stacey.
At today's City of Pickering Executive Committee meeting, the committee will be reviewing the proposed 2022 Fees & Charges. If passed by the committee, the proposed fees will be brought to Council on March 28.
The fee increases will impact both City Development Departments - Building and Planning, as well as Development Services, Engineering Services and Legal Services.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact Stacey.
The Region of Durham has released two reports, 2022-INFO-19 and the Growth Management Study consultant's Alternative Land Need Scenarios Assessment Summary Report.
Members should review both reports and take note of any comments, questions or concerns. The Region of Durham is requesting all feedback on the alternative land need scenarios by April 14.
A public information meeting will also be held on March 24, 2022 at 7 p.m., which will feature a presentation and the opportunity to ask questions about alternative land need scenarios. You can register here for this meeting.
All available information about the Region's comprehensive review (Envision Durham) can be found on their project web page.
The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) is delaying the implementation of the Excess Soil Requirements initiative through ERO #019-5203. This changes the obligations of members regarding excess soils and members should review the linked posting.
The purpose of the proposal is to temporarily delay the implementation of the provisions in the Excess Soil Regulation that came into effect January 1, 2022 until January 1, 2023. MECP notes this would "allow more time for the gradual implementation and better understanding of the regulation." OHBA will reviewing and responding to this new consultation accordingly.
If you have any related questions or require clarification, please reach out to OHBA Director of Planning Policy and Advocacy, Larry Kotseff.
The City of Oshawa is seeking input on the potential city-wide expansion of the Residential Rental House Licensing (RRHL) Program.
Currently, the City requires all rental properties in the vicinity of Durham College and Ontario Tech University to be licensed under the RRHL Program, which ensures rentals comply with minimum standards of health, safety and property maintenance. A city-wide expansion of the RRHL Program would require all rental properties in Oshawa to become licensed.
Members can provide feedback by:
Feedback will be received until noon Monday, April 18, 2022, and considered in the development of regulatory licensing standards that will be presented to the Corporate Services Committee later this year.
The Region of Durham is in the process of updating their Regional Transit Development Charge Bylaw. The current bylaw is set to expire on December 31, 2022, however council has authorized staff to have a new bylaw in place by July 1, 2022.
The background study will be released on April 12, 2022, followed by the statutory public meeting on April 27, 2022.
Deadline for comments on the background study is June 3, 2022 at 5 p.m.
DRHBA will send the background study to members once it is released, and questions/comments can be sent to Stacey.
The City of Pickering has released the first draft of their Integrated Sustainable Design Standards (ISDS) Checklist. According to staff, the draft ISDS Checklist represents a combination of best practices, green building technologies, green development standards from other GTHA municipalities and current Pickering Official Plan policies.
The ISDS Checklist is divided into tiers of performance criteria with Tier 1 being mandatory which is applied through the planning approval process and Tier 2 being voluntary.
The ISDS seeks to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, increase energy efficiency and improve overall sustainability by specifying minimum energy performance targets and sustainable design principles for new development.
Feedback can be provided to Stacey or by completing the questionnaire provided by the City. The questionnaire will be open until April 1.
Spring is in the air and that means that a provincial election is just around the corner.
In preparation for the upcoming election and related campaigns, the Ontario Home Builders' Association has prepared two one-page documents for members that outline the rules/laws surrounding contributions to political parties and to third party advertising campaigns:
Third Party Political Contributions and Advertising
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