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Municipal Matters

Dam Removals

(Dam: as in a concrete structure holding back water and not just an excuse to swear in a blog post)

Is your property home to a waterway with a dam structure? The kind built many moons ago and no longer serving a useful function? Has a resident of your municipality called staff regarding dam removal? These structures can be a liability and in some cases, the cost of maintaining or replacing a dam makes the dam thing a hassle worth removing . . .

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May 23, 2016

The Solicitors Desk

A Primer

I am often asked, by individuals I meet and even other lawyers, what being a municipal law solicitor entails. Perhaps our readers are keen to know what I spend my days doing as well (besides writing fantastic blog content, of course!) and since we, at Municipal Matters, do not like to leave any stone unturned, here is the big reveal:

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May 13, 2016

Proposed Provincial Plans Released

Changes announced for the Growth Plan, the Greenbelt Plan, the Niagara Escarpment Plan, and the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan

The Province of Ontario undertook a comprehensive, co-ordinated review of Ontario's planning policy documents in February, 2015. An advisory panel provided a report containing recommendations in December, 2015, and now the proposed plans, incorporating many, if not all, of the recommendations, have been released for public consumption and . . .

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May 12, 2016

Giving Residents a Say

As published in the May, 2016 Issue of Municipal World

Bill 73, Smart Growth for Our Communities Act, 2015, has been an item of much discussion over the past year in the planning and development community. One of the main thrusts of the legislative change is an emphasis on civic engagement and an attempt to achieve more meaningful participation from the public. I wrote an article on the Bill 73 . . .

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May 09, 2016

Councillor Records and MFIPPA

The Information and Privacy Commissioner releases a fact sheet

Because the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC) decides matters of access to records held by municipalities, an issue often arises when the records requested are those belonging to a municipally-elected councillor, pursuant to the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (“MFIPPA”). Perhaps the “records . . .

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April 25, 2016

Local corner stores indicative of solid neighbourhoods?

Changes in Vancouver may be something to consider in Ontario

Most people probably have memories of growing up with a local corner store. You know, the place that the kids could run to with their friends for popsicles, where you could grab milk on the way home from work, and where neighbours would bump into each other on weekend mornings picking up the paper. In 2013, the Globe and Mail published an . . .

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April 17, 2016

The Dirt on Commercial Fill Operations and Site Alteration By-laws

Issues with commercial fill operations are beginning to pop up with increasing frequency, particularly for those municipalities within the Greater Golden Horseshoe Area. A commercial fill operation is generally recognized as being the placing or dumping of fill for renumeration or some other form of consideration. Each year, development . . .

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March 31, 2016

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