Bill 130, Municipal Statute Law Amendment Act, 2006 passed on December 19.
It focuses on replacing prescribed and very specific authority with broad permissive powers. This will provide municipal governments with more local autonomy and the flexibility to meet their communities’ expectations.  It also affects how councils will fulfill their responsibilities.

The Municipal Act is the cornerstone of the provincial-municipal relationship. The Province committed to reviewing the Act in June 2004 and has repeatedly stated that it is intended to come into effect on January 1, 2007.  Many of the policy positions of the Association have found their way into the Bill, including positions that were not included in the Bill that introduced a new Act in 2001. 

Bill 130 moves the province toward a more mature relationship by removing it from micro-managing municipal governments and instead provides broader, accountable authority for municipal governments to operate. Broader authority and less prescriptiveness signal that the Province believes the municipal order of government is respected, responsible, and accountable. Ontario’s municipalities will be better positioned to strengthen good governance, encourage economic growth, and promote a high quality of life as a result of improvements in this legislation.   A copy of the redlined Bill that includes Standing Committee amendments is available on the province’s legislative website and has been linked to this Alert.