04/04/2007

AMO called on the Government to hold meetings province-wide before proposed Act went to Standing Committee. AMO members were asked to bring this to the attention of their MPP.
Background:

While the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) believes that the protection of species is an important matter, it also recommends that the Province's proposed Endangered Species Act 2007 should be discussed in greater detail before it advances to the Standing Committee Hearing process. Furthermore, AMO believes that the Province can achieve better mutual understanding of the Legislation and stakeholder concerns by hosting a series of informative meetings with municipal governments and other key stakeholders. 

"This interim step would offer a better opportunity to discuss matters than is normally achieved at Standing Committee," said Doug Reycraft, AMO President. "An interim step would help for more informed submissions and presentations to Standing Committee on ideas to ensure the legislation is clear and does not bring unintended consequences."

These meetings should be held across the Province and offer the opportunity for questions and answers about the proposed legislation. This would help achieve a better understanding of the proposed legislation, its flexibility, new process and rules, impacts and enforcement provisions. 

While the Government's objectives of environmental and species stewardship is supported, many concerns have been expressed regarding the proposed legislation. There is also a desire to mitigate potential economic impacts on landowners and communities.