November 29, 2016

The government has introduced Bill 7, the Promoting Affordable Housing Act, which is before the Standing Committee on Social Policy for hearings. The Bill is an implementation measure flowing from the provincial Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy to work towards affordable, suitable, adequate housing for people in Ontario. The Bill would amend or repeal the following acts:
  • The Planning Act,
  • The Development Charges Act,
  • The Elderly Persons’ Housing Aid Act,
  • The Housing Services Act, and
  • The Residential Tenancies Act.
The proposed changes would have a number of impacts for municipal governments, including:
  • the ability for greater flexibility to administer social housing,
  • the ability to choose to implement an inclusionary zoning bylaw, to require new developments to contain a certain amount of affordable housing,
  • requirement of the removal of fees for the development of secondary suites,
  • requirement of municipal governments without property standards bylaws to assume responsibility for inspecting and enforcing standards.
Overall, many of these changes are positive and would allow for lead to the development of additional affordable housing.  There are some areas of concern for municipal governments, outlined in AMO’s submission. On November 28, 2016, AMO President Lynn Dollin made a presentation to the Standing Committee on Social Policy, outlining key issues from AMO’s submission.